10 wounded, 2 critically, in Lakeland shooting

Up to $5,000 reward offered for information leading to shooter’s arrest

LAKELAND, Fla. – Ten people were hurt, including two who sustained critical injuries, in a shooting Monday afternoon in Lakeland, according to police.

Lakeland Police Department said officers responded to a location near Iowa Avenue North and Plum Street around 3:43 p.m. and located three victims – two with critical injuries.

According to Lakeland Police Chief Sam Taylor, the rest of the victims were transported to the hospital by a personal vehicle and had non-life-threatening injuries. Taylor said the three victims that were transported by emergency medical services from the scene were all men between the ages of 20 and 35.

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One of the men was shot in the abdomen and the other was shot in the face, according to Taylor.

Taylor said police are looking for a dark blue, Nissan four-door vehicle with dark tinted windows and a temporary license plate that was involved in the shooting.

Police said that all of the windows were down in the Nissan and it appeared that four occupants of the vehicle started shooting from all four windows, firing at both sides of the street.

“We have reason to believe this was a targeted event, that it was not a random act,” Taylor said.

Police said they have recovered evidence so far that rifle ammunition and 9mm ammunition were used in the shooting and they also recovered a rifle from one of the vehicles used to transport victims to the hospital.

A felony amount of marijuana was also located at the scene, but it is too soon to tell if it is connected to the shooting, Taylor said.

Taylor added that a school bus had just dropped off children at the location of the shooting a minute before the shots rang out.

“This is something that doesn’t happen in Lakeland. I’ve been here 33 years and I can tell you I have never worked an event where this many people have been shot at one time,” Taylor said.

A reward of up to $5,000 is being offered for information leading to the identification and arrest of any suspects involved in the shooting.

Anyone with such information is urged to contact Heartland Crime Stoppers Florida at 1-800-226-8477 or visit their website and click on “Submit A Tip.”

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About the Author:

Jacob joined ClickOrlando.com in 2022. He spent 19 years at the Orlando Sentinel, mostly as a photojournalist and video journalist, before joining Spectrum News 13 as a web editor and digital journalist in 2021.