“We receive information from the community regarding criminal activity every day,” said Sheriff Grady Judd as he briefed the media on the arrest of Hiram Angus Melvin, DOB 12/05/1951, 2850 New Tampa Highway, Lot 62, Lakeland. “We acted on the information we received and our detectives did an excellent job following up to make this arrest. It’s a successful partnership that we depend upon.”
Sheriff Grady Judd received information in his office on Monday, June 8, 2008, regarding the possibility that Melvin was in possession of “rocket launcher.”
The information was then forwarded to Polk County Sheriff’s Office undercover detectives and, at approximately 2:30 pm today, Wednesday, June 11, 2008, detectives found Melvin at his place of employment, the Aamco Transmission shop, 1301 West Memorial Boulevard, Lakeland. Detectives made contact with Melvin who gave permission for detectives to search his 1979 blue Buick Rivera.
Inside the truck of the car, detectives found a “homemade” rocket launcher, a fake rocket projectile, a military shipping tube, and a .22 caliber Bolt Action Rifle with a Class 3 Device (Silencer) attached. Melvin admitted that the weapons were his.
Melvin has a criminal history that includes a 1992 Aggravated Assault charge, a 1992 Armed Trespassing charge, a 1995 Battery charge, and two 2005 Grand Theft charges, one of which was committed with a firearm.
Today, detectives charged Melvin with Possession of a Hoax Weapon of Mass Destruction, Felon in Possession of Firearm, Felon in Possession of Class 3 Device (Silencer), and Violation of Probation. “He will be spending a very long time behind bars,” said Sheriff Judd.
Melvin admitted to detectives that he was a “1-percenter,” belonging to the Cobra motorcycle gang out of Virginia, and rides with the Florida gang.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office, Tampa Bomb Squad, and ATF are assisting in this ongoing investigation.