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PCSO News Release

Media Contact:
Wood, Donna

Public Information Officer 
News Date: 9/21/2013 

 Polk County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Deputies Arrest Suspect in Hit and Run Traffic Crash with Injuries 

UPDATE  - Polk County Sheriff’s Office deputies located Christopher Wade Kennedy on Saturday, September 21, 2013, at a residence located on SB Merrion Road, in north Lakeland.  He was transported to Lakeland Regional Medical Center where he was treated and released for injuries he sustained in the crash he fled from the night before.  His charges include 6 cts Leaving Scene of Crash involving Serious Bodily Injury, DWLSR (Habitual Traffic Offender) w/ Serious Bodily Injury.

All victims of the crash have been updated to stable, with the exception of Charles Clendenin who remains very critical.

 Kennedy's September 21, 2013 Booking Photo.












At approximately 10:23 pm, on Friday, September 20, 2013, a 1990, gold Acura Legend, driven by Christopher Wade Kennedy, DOB 01/30/1966, LKA, Staghorn Drive, Lakeland, was traveling south on Lewellyn Road at a high rate of speed. 

At approximately the same time, a 1999, silver, Oldsmobile Alero, driven by Calep Mead, DOB 02/02/1989, Reynolds Road, Lakeland, was traveling east on Rushing Road. 

Mead entered the intersection of Lewellyn and Valley Farms Roads and did not see the Acura until it struck the driver’s side passenger door area of the Oldsmobile. 

The impact caused the Acura to slide under the Oldsmobile, and the forward momentum of the Acura caused it to carry and then roll the Oldsmobile several times to the south, before it came to rest upside down in the eastern drainage ditch.  The Acura suffered significant damage and came to rest in the eastern draining ditch of Lewellyn Road as well. 

According to witnesses, Kennedy borrowed a flashlight from them after the crash so he could check on the people in his car; however he fled the scene prior to the arrival of emergency responders.  Victims were transported to Lakeland Regional Medical Center.   

Kennedy had two passengers;  

·         Delana Michelle Wallace, DOB 11/23/1982, North Wabash Avenue – transported to LRMC in serious but stable condition.

·         Shannon Cole, DOB 09/02/1976, Deeson Road – was ejected and came to rest under the Acura; Cole was transported to LRMC in stable condition. 

Kenney is believed to have a head injury. 

Mead had three passengers: 

·         Charles Clendenin, DOB 10/16/1969, Reynolds Road – was ejected from the Oldsmobile.  Clendenin was air lifted to LRMC in critical condition.

·         Tanner Waggoner, DOB 01/25/1989, Tower Road, Lake Alfred – was ejected from the Oldsmobile.  Waggoner was transported to LRMC in critical condition.

·         Melissa Keen, DOB 12/22/1988, Reynolds Road – was entrapped in the Oldsmobile and had to be extracted.  Keen was transported to LRMC in serious but stable condition. 

Mead is in serious but stable condition at LRMC. 

Kennedy, described as being approximately 6’1” tall and approximately 180 pounds with gray hair, and has blue eyes.  His June 2013 booking photo is attached. 

Anyone with information about Kennedy’s whereabouts is urged to contact the Polk County Sheriff’s Office at 863.298.6200. 

ANYONE WITH INFORMATION WHO WANTS TO REMAIN ANONYMOUS AND BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CASH REWARD IS ASKED TO CALL HEARTLAND CRIME STOPPERS AT 1-800-226-TIPS or LOG ONTO www.heartlandcrimestoppers.com. ANONYMITY IS GUARANTEED!  iPhone users can download a free tip submit app to anonymously report crime. To install this free app, search for "TipSoft" or "TipSubmit" on the Apple App Store.