22-year-old motorcyclist killed in Polk County crash involving SUV

Deputies: Impact flipped SUV onto its side, broke bike into pieces

By Brianna Volz - Web producer

Motorcyclist, 22, dies after crashing into SUV, Polk County deputies say. (Image: Polk County Sheriff's Office)

MULBERRY, Fla. - A 22-year-old motorcyclist was killed after crashing into an SUV in Polk County, according to deputies.

Deputies said the crash took place Tuesday around 5:55 a.m. at the intersection of State Road 60 West and Pine Grove Road in Mulberry.

According to witnesses, the motorcyclist, identified as Lance Strickland, of Lithia, was going east on his Suzuki sport motorcycle at a high rate of speed while passing at least two other drivers.

At the same time, a 54-year-old woman driving a Ford Explorer SUV was turning left onto Pine Grove Road when Strickland smashed into her front passenger-side door, causing the SUV to flip onto its side, deputies said. Strickland's motorcycle also broke into pieces as a result of the impact.

Deputies said Strickland was wearing a helmet, but it came off during the crash. He was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Sheriff's Office.

The woman in the SUV was taken to a nearby hospital to be treated for injuries that were not considered to be life-threatening, authorities said. She is expected to recover.

The eastbound lanes of SR 60 were shut down for about three hours as part of the crash investigation.

While the investigation is ongoing, deputies said they don't anticipate any charges.

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