Cyber Star header
April 2018
Dear Friend,
We are so fortunate as a community that according to 2017 data, crime in Polk County continues to decline-both in total numbers and crimes per capita.
According to Uniform Crime Report (UCR) data, as reported annually to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), there were 823 fewer crimes in 2017 than in 2016 in the Polk County Sheriff's Office's primary jurisdiction. That includes all of unincorporated Polk County; cities contracted with the PCSO including Polk City, Frostproof, Eagle Lake, Fort Meade, Dundee, and Mulberry; and the town of Hillcrest Heights and the village of Highland Park.
There were 7,880 crimes in 2016 as compared to 7,057 crimes in 2017, a total reduction in reported crimes of 10.4%. 
There were decreases in all 7 crime categories: homicides, forced sex offenses, robberies, aggravated assaults, burglaries, larcenies, and motor vehicle thefts. Violent crime decreased 12.2% and non-violent crime decreased 10.1%.
The crime rate, which is the number of crimes per 100 residents, is down 12.3% from 2016 (1.87) to 2017 (1.64). This is the lowest crime rate ever measured in PCSO's jurisdiction, breaking the previous record low of 1.87 crimes per 100 from last year. Reliable crime statistics in Polk County started in 1971, when the crime rate was recorded at 4.16 crimes per 100.
Since 1997, the crime rate in Polk County has fallen by 75%. In 2017, the Polk/PCSO crime rate was 48% less than the most recently release Florida state crime rate in 2016 (1.64 compared to 3.18).
We would not see this decline in crime if it weren't for the ongoing and invaluable support of our citizens and the hard work and dedication of our full-time and over 3,000 volunteer members.

Grady Judd, Sheriff 

Trail marker dedicated to two fallen PCSO deputies
On Wednesday, March 28, 2018, a memorial marker was dedicated near the October 21, 2001 crash scene of a PCSO helicopter that claimed the lives of two of our deputies. On that day nearly seventeen years ago, pilot Gene "Brian" Wilkinson and flight observer Larry Rhoden were killed when their helicopter crashed near Lake Hancock. 
Allow us to brag on our detectives...
In early March, a boy named Sean parked his bicycle by his school bus stop, and made sure to secure it with a lock. Despite that, someone cut the lock and stole his bike. We featured the story on our Facebook page, and many folks donated money toward buying a new bike for Sean. Our Southwest District detectives also pitched in some money, purchased a new bike, and delivered it to Sean and his father, Randy. Well done!
Never miss a Sheriff Judd news conference
There are 555 reasons to LIKE & FOLLOW the Polk County Sheriff's Office on Facebook. That means there are more reasons than there are lakes in Polk County (we have 554 lakes here). One of the reasons is that you get notified when Sheriff Grady Judd is addressing the media on major Polk County news. 
Why make a crook's life easier?
Most car burglaries in Polk County are committed by thieves walking from car-to-car flipping door handles to see what is unlocked. Occasionally, thieves will break a window, but usually it's because they spotted something valuable inside the car. The best way to prevent becoming a victim-remove (or at least hide) your valuables and lock your cars.
Be informed in your community
The Polk County Sheriff's Office is available on several social media sites with the goal to help keep you informed on crimes, scams, events, and more. One of the sites where you can find us is Nextdoor. The site is arranged by neighborhoods, allowing people in your neighborhood to alert other residents about important information. Plus, the Polk County Sheriff's Office is able to send neighborhood-specific information about important details regarding things such as crime trends, missing children, or suspicious incidents.

It's Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Distracted driving is a public health issue that affects us all. The latest statistics show motor vehicle fatalities are up 6% from 2015. More than 40,000 people were killed on our nation's roadways last year, and distracted driving is a major contributor. 
Each death is 100% preventable. From cell phones to dashboard infotainment systems to evolving voice command features - all pose a threat to our safety. Just one second of your attention is all takes to change a life forever. 

Distracted Driving Awareness Month in April is a united effort to recognize and eliminate preventable deaths from distracted driving.
Don't get caught by surprise
Following major tax law changes, the IRS encourages you to do a "paycheck checkup" to make sure you have the right amount of tax taken out of your paychecks for your personal situation. Having too little tax withheld could mean a tax bill or a penalty. And with the average refund topping $2,800, some may prefer to get more money in their pay now. So grab a copy of your last tax return and check the IRS Withholding Calculator today. The earlier you check, the more time there is for withholding to take place evenly. 

Jeepin' with Judd 2018 FINAL REPORT...

The numbers are in----this year's Jeepin' with Judd raised a whopping $115,831.00 for  Polk Sheriff's Charities, Inc. !!!
We were going to put just one exclamation point, but with that kind of total, we thought three were justified
Judd Jog 2018

Our Annual Judd Jog event will be here before you know it! It is scheduled for April 18, 2018. Click here to Register now!

PCSO's Arf-Madness  

Congratulations, Chase ! Winner of the  2018 Tournament of
, also known as  Arf-Madness . Thank you to everyone who voted on Facebook during the tournament. All of our K-9's are Good Doggies.
The Teen Driving Challenge

Got teen drivers? Sign them up for the PCSO TEEN DRIVER CHALLENGE. 
Teen Driver Challenge Dates:
April 27th, and 28th, 2018 
The Teen Driver Challenge provides young drivers with hands-on experience and classroom learning, reducing their risk of becoming another tragic statistic. We encourage parents and teenagers to get involved in this valuable program. All it costs is 12 hours of your time - but the rewards are priceless.
For more information, please contact Deputy Sheriff Johnny Wombles at 863-297-1109 or email us at
Sheriff Grady Judd

Join us on:
Facebook icon Twitter icon Youtube icon new star

Join Our Mailing List