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Thursday, September 29, 2022

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Update: Suspect Allegedly Stole Bicycle And Shot At Victims In Lakeland Incident

Lakeland, Florida- The Lakeland Police Department arrested a Lakeland man, Elijah Stackhouse (DOB 7/14/2002) charging him with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, felony petit theft, discharge of a firearm in public, aggravated assault with deadly weapon, resisting officer without violence and possession of ammo by convicted felon.

The arrest was over the theft of a bicycle and the ensuing actions caused a local elementary school to be placed on heightened security. After being confronted trying to flee with the a stolen bicycle the suspect allegedly discharged a gun.

Below is a copy of the affidavit: It should be noted that this is an unedited report of facts by the Lakeland Police Department. These facts are up for question and everyone is entitled to question the validity of facts by law enforcement in a court of law. The Daily Ridge does not rewrite these facts as some meanings or interpretations could be in error and change context. We hope readers appreciate being able to read the information and come to their own understanding and conclusions:

“On Monday August 29, 2022, at approximately 1104 hours, I Officer Bermudez #180 was dispatched to Publix Division Office Gate 8 at 3260 New Tampa Highway, Lakeland, Florida in reference to a shooting.

I made contact with victim REDACTED at the 3700 block of New Tampa Highway, Lakeland, Florida at the incident scene. REDACTED advised while he and his girlfriend were at their residence REDACTED New Tampa Highway Lakeland, Florida the defendant Elljah Stackhouse approached his neighbor’s front yard and removed her pink bicycle. REDACTED advised REDACTED (his girlfriend) that Stackhouse was approaching their residence when he told her to make contact with REDACTED and ask her if she lent her bicycle to anyone. REDACTED advised REDACTED did not lend her bicycle to anyone. REDACTED advised that she, REDACTED and REDACTED got into REDACTED’s
car and drove westbound on New Tampa Highway attempting to locate Stackhouse who was on REDACTED’s bicycle.

REDACTED advised REDACTED pulled over on the westbound lane of the 3700 block of New Tampa Highway when they observed the defendant in the eastbound lane peddling REDACTED’s bicycle.
REDACTED advised when they observed the defendant, he got off the bicycle and started walking towards the Publix warehouse Gate 8.

REDACTED advised he and REDACTED exited REDACTED’s vehicle and approached the defendant on foot. REDACTED stated he started questioning the defendant about removing the bicycle off
Is property without her consent. REDACTED
advised the defendant removed a firearm from his waist band. REDACTED stated he and REDACTED
we’re standing next to each other on the Publix Warehouse roadway when the defendant shot
towards him and REDACTED. When the defendant shot at REDACTED he fired his firearm.”

2nd Affidavit of arrest:

On 08-29-22 at anproximatelv 1130 hours. I was working at the Lakeland Police Department as a
uniformed patrol officer. While on dutv. I responded to the area of Publix located at 3260 New Tampa Highway, Lakeland, FL, 33805. I responded to this location in reference to a shooting in which the suspect was still at large. Upon my arrival, I assumed a position just south of the incident location. I observed through LPD email a picture of the suspect riding an orange bicycle. I observed the suspect to be a dark-skinned male wearing tan long pants, a black t-shirt, with a black backpack. In this photo, the black male’s face is partially visible
I heard over LPD radio the suspect was running southbound through Publix towards the main entrance. I maneuvered my patrol car to that location and observed the black male who was running southbound towards my vehicle and then laid on the ground, surrendering to law enforcement. I immediately recognized the suspect as the same suspect from the photo which was sent through agency email. I then removed the black backpack from the suspect who was handcuffed and began conducting an inventory of the backpack locating a FL Identification card belonging to the suspect Elijah Devonta Stackhouse.


Stackhouse was transported to the Lakeland Police Department.


While at the Lakeland Police Department I made contact with Stackhouse who made statements Post
Miranda implvine and implicatine himself in the crimes that occurred. I asked Stackhouse why he was all dirt and covered in leaves and mud. Stackhouse stated. ” I don’t know man. I then asked Stackhouse again how he was covered in mud and outdoor type debris, I also asked Stackhouse how he got the cuts on his face, and left shoulder, a puncture in his right hand as well as his left
bicep. I recognized these injuries to be conducive to attempting to climb or crawl through barbed wire,
such as the barbed wire surrounding the Publix Warehouse and adjacent properties. Stackhouse was then asked why he was running, and he advised” all I know is, I was trying to get away from that dog , I asked “what dog” and he stated, “the black dog and the police were chasing me, so I jumped the fence, and cut myself up trying to get away.

I determined through my investigation when Stackhouse made statements in regard to running from the black dog and the police, he was making reference to Sergeant Whitaker #71 and his canine partner Blizzard on a 30-foot tracking lead. Sgt. Whitaker advised over LPD radio he and his canine partner were beginning a canine track at 1104 hours, on 08-29-22 in reference to locating the suspect in the shooting. Sgt. Whitaker advised his canine partner was actively tracking what he believed to be the suspect in this case. While tracking through the Publix Plaza Sgt. Whitaker advised the suspect (stackhouse) observed
him in his agency-issued uniform which displays he is a canine officer with the Lakeland Police
Department, when Stackhouse observed Set. Whitaker and his canine partner Blizzard tracking in his direction, he removed himself from concealment and began running westbound through the parking lot away from Sgt. Whitaker and his canine partner Blizzard. Stackhouse began running in the direction of other employees on the property westbound and then began running southbound towards the exit gate. Whitaker gave numerous canine warnings while conducting his active tracking advising he is a Lakeland Police Department canine handler and he needed to surrender to law enforcement. Stackhouse ignored Sgt. Whitaker’s lawful commands and continued running through the parking lot where he was apprehended by law enforcement at 1131 hours on 08-29-22.


I determined through my investigation Stackhouse knowingly, unlawfully, and willingly, took headlong
flight from law enforcement officers and a law enforcement canine who were actively attempting to apprehend him in an attemot to avoid caoture b law enforcement.


I charged Stackhouse with resisting an officer without violence.


See Officer Bermudez #loU charging documents for original charges for this incident.

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