Polk County Sheriff’s Office Press Release
The Polk County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Unit investigated a vehicle versus pedestrian crash during the early morning hours of Saturday, August 28, 2021, during which the pedestrian was killed. Preliminary details are:
Around 1:55 a.m. this morning, the PCSO ECC received a 911 call from the area of US Hwy 98 North just north of the Duff Road intersection. A blue 2006 Ford F-250 pulling a trailer being driven by 22-year-old Tyler Alderman of Lakeland was heading southbound on Hwy 98, and entered into the right turn lane to turn onto Duff Road, at which time the truck and trailer struck 35-year-old Jessica Cunningham (homeless) who was in the roadway. It was dark at the time of the crash, and there is minimal lighting in that area.
Neither Alderman nor his two adult passengers were injured. He did not appear to be impaired, driving recklessly, or distracted. It is possible Cunningham was impaired, based on interviews with family members and her history. The investigation is ongoing.