Date: October 1, 2001 "For Immediate Release"
To: News Media
From: Sheriff Lawrence W. Crow, Jr.
Media Contact:

Aaron Flint, (863) 534-6377 or 502-8262 pager

Polk County Sheriff's Office Detention Deputy Brutally Attacked by Inmate at South County Jail

Detention deputy Walter Connelly, was brutally attacked by Tavares Jerrod Wright, an inmate awaiting trial on two counts of first-degree murder, on Saturday, September 29, at 4 p.m..

Wright, 20, of Lakeland, attacked detention deputy Connelly when Connelly attempted to serve him dessert.  As Connelly opened Wright's cell door, Wright brutally attacked Connelly.  After the brief but brutal attack, Wright locked himself in his cell. 

Connelly, an employee of the Polk County Sheriff's Office since 1990, was taken by ambulance to Lake Wales Hospital and then transferred to Winter Haven Hospital, where he remained until Monday morning, when he was released.  Connelly suffered a fractured C-3 vertebrate, stitches in and above his left eye, a scratched right cornea, and fractures to his nasal cavity.  As a result of the attack, Connelly will miss at least eight weeks of work.

Tavares Wright was charged with aggravated battery to a law enforcement officer.

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Distribution: Undersheriff, Division Commanders, Communications, News Media

A text only version of this release is also available.

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