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Polk County sheriff’s deputy killed by bullet from another deputy’s gun

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Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd shoed pictures during a press conference Tuesday. They included the BB gun allegedly pointed at deputies by Cheryl Williams, also shown, and a large portrait of Deputy Blane Lane, who died in the line of duty Tuesday morning. Image: PCSO via Facebook

A 21-year-old Polk County sheriff’s deputy was killed by a bullet from another deputy’s gun early Tuesday morning as four of them served an arrest warrant on a woman in Polk City.

Sheriff Grady Judd said the suspect pointed a realistic-looking BB gun at deputies who had entered a mobile home and that two of them fired six shots at her.

The woman was struck twice and injured.

Deputy Blane Lane, who was positioned outside the mobile home, was struck and killed by a bullet that passed through an exterior wall.

Judd said the other deputies are “absolutely devastated.” They are on administrative leave, pending an internal review. 

“It’s our job to be at our very best at the very worst of times,” Judd said during an afternoon press conference. “And this is the very worst of times for us.”

Judd praised Lane, who had been a patrol deputy for 8 1/2 months, as outstanding law enforcement officer. The sheriff said Lane leaves behind a 3-year-old child.

The woman — 46-year-old Cheryl Williams, who has served time for trafficking meth — was wanted for failure to appear in court in another drug case. Judd said she is hospitalized under guard and faces a charge of second-degree felony murder.

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Joe Byrnes

About Joe Byrnes


Joe Byrnes reports on aging-related issues for WMFE/WMFV. Please contact him at jbyrnes@wmfe.org. He came to WMFE from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after ... Read Full Bio »