11 injured in shooting in Lakeland, Florida, police say

10 injured in drive-by shooting in Lakeland, 2 in critical condition

10 injured in drive-by shooting in Lakeland, 2 in critical condition


At least 11 people were injured in a drive-by shooting Monday afternoon in Lakeland, Florida, with two of the injured in critical condition, police said.

Local authorities initially said 10 people were injured in the mass shooting, but updated the number to 11 during a news conference Tuesday morning after another person was admitted to an area hospital in connection with the crime. Police continued to search for the shooters, who remained at large when the Lakeland Police Department shared its latest update.

Lakeland Police Chief Sam Taylor said at a news conference Monday night that investigators believe the shooting was targeted and not random. Taylor said the shooting happened around 3:45 p.m., and that gunfire was coming from all four windows of a slow-moving four-door Nissan. The car is described as dark blue with tinted windows and a temporary tag.

By Tuesday morning, investigators had located a vehicle in West Lakeland matching the description of the Nissan involved in the drive-by shooting, according to the police chief. They believe four people were inside the car, Taylor said, and “at least two of them were actively involved in the shooting.” However, Taylor added that “there could be more.”

Police have a “high level of confidence” that the vehicle found by investigators earlier Tuesday is the one seen fleeing the scene of Monday’s shooting on surveillance footage, although additional tests are underway to try to match confirmed.

“We don’t have anyone in custody yet, but I will tell you that detectives worked through the night to identify the suspects and we have some … I would classify them as very promising leads, very promising information,” Taylor said. “And we’re actively pursuing those leads right now as we speak.”

The police chief could only share basic details about the leads currently being pursued, but told reporters at Tuesday’s press conference that detectives have identified more than one possible suspect and that those individuals are from Polk County, but not Lakeland . Although Lakeland is located in Polk County, the county itself is sprawling and covers approximately 1,800 square miles of land, according to census data. Lakeland is about an hour east of Tampa Bay.

Taylor said Monday that two people were transported from the scene of the shooting to Lakeland Regional Hospital in critical condition. One was in surgery and the other was “either in surgery or headed for surgery” during the evening press conference. One of them was shot in the abdomen and the other had a gunshot wound to the “jaw area,” Taylor said. He reiterated Tuesday morning that both victims suffered “very serious injuries” and said one was transported to another hospital in Tampa for treatment.

An additional nine people – including the eleventh victim, who arrived at the hospital recently as a guest – had injuries that were not life-threatening, he said. One of them suffered a ricochet wound, Taylor said. All nine are expected to be released from the hospital on Tuesday.

All the victims are elderly men “described as between the ages of 20 and 35,” Taylor said.

“That’s something that doesn’t happen in Lakeland,” he said. “It actually saddens me to a certain extent that we’re considered a small town between Tampa and Orlando, and when things like this happen, it just hits me a little bit. Maybe we’re not a small town anymore.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *