News Update for 7/19/18

Highlands County residents will have an opportunity to again look at the county budget when commissioners hold a community meeting tonight. That will commence at 6:00 in the commissioners’ board room at the Highlands County Government Center in Sebring.
Residents got their first look at Commissioner Don Elwell’s semi-annual town hall meeting at South Florida State College earlier this week. Elwell called it “a sobering presentation,” discussing how far the county is in the hole and what is being done to resolve the issues.
Commissioners already have voted to enact a fire assessment and raise property taxes to help with the problem.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a shooting of a man who stole three 18-packs of Natural Ice beer from the Shell convenient mart on Combee Road North in Lakeland.
According to reports, 43-year-old Rennie Defoe, Jr. of Plant City, entered the store, walked to the beer cooler, picked up the brew then walked out of the store without paying.
Owner of the store, 22-year-old Mehedeun Hasan reportedly picked up a 9mm handgun and ran out after Defoe to confront him.
Defoe jumped in his Toyota Camry. Hasan then shot Defoe as he was backing up to leave. Defoe later crashed his vehicle. He was taken to Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center for wounds from a single gunshot to his left arm and chest. He is listed in critical condition.
Hasan has been arrested and charged with shooting into an occupied vehicle and attempted 2nd degree murder.