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Old 06-04-2014, 06:37 AM
 
41 posts, read 27,058 times
Reputation: 28

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After living in Polk Co. for a number of years it seemed that there was a lot of meth. I asked someone and they said it was mostly because in the late 70's and early 80's when there was a huge increase in the drug traffic through Miami (mostly the white powder) that the first stopping point for smugglers was Lake Wales. Also it seems that Polk Co. (Bartow) was more 'wild west' or 'open'. Any thoughts on that?
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Old 06-04-2014, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Atlanta/Tallahassee/Chicago/Lakeland
478 posts, read 892,850 times
Reputation: 314
Quote:
Originally Posted by sublet View Post
After living in Polk Co. for a number of years it seemed that there was a lot of meth. I asked someone and they said it was mostly because in the late 70's and early 80's when there was a huge increase in the drug traffic through Miami (mostly the white powder) that the first stopping point for smugglers was Lake Wales. Also it seems that Polk Co. (Bartow) was more 'wild west' or 'open'. Any thoughts on that?
Very much true but in some regards, things are better, some are worse today.

Polk for a long time was a major hub for a majority of illegal/illicit activity. With access to I-4, US27, US98, SR60, SR33, US92 and US17 as major ground-based shipping lanes and an abundance of isolated airstrips, transport throughout the state made Polk's centralized location a popular choice (akin to the major shipping and distribution companies located there today) for moving and processing products. Major products distributed were cocaine, marijuana, heroine, meth (known better by the colloquial name ICE the 80's), Jungle Juice and human trafficking/prostitution (which fueled the fire in outlawing strip clubs, then adult-oriented venues in the 90's). Now, there were no major shootouts (that I can remember) although there were isolated incidents of people getting killed around Polk County and a few disappearances. As for Bartow, there was more corruption than anything as kickbacks allowed major shipping lanes to remain open with little or no interference from law enforcement (or so I've heard).

Last edited by HeartofFlorida; 06-04-2014 at 12:47 PM..
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Old 06-05-2014, 12:43 AM
 
41 posts, read 27,058 times
Reputation: 28
It only stands to reason that corruption in the criminal justice system is in direct proportion with the amount of narcotics trafficking. I was chosen for jury duty once and when being interviewed by a lawyer as a potential jurer I gave him my view of Polk County. Needless to say, I didn't get to sit in on that trial. Sometimes I would meet people that were long time meth users and after talking to them long enough and listening to their experiences I would get the 'willies'. My cousin was into the meth scene in the late 80's and early 90's. He's been out of it since then. One time we were driving around Alturas which is between Bartow and Lake Wales - kind of the epicenter of meth at one time. He said you could walk down the road and find discarded hypodermic needles. I saw a video called 'Cocaine Cowboys' about a couple guys who were major traffickers in the late 70's early 80's and they had a landing strip near Lakeland.
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Old 06-09-2014, 09:12 PM
 
Location: Lakeland, FL
147 posts, read 166,714 times
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I would venture to say Polk is no worse than any other area of Florida. However, the Polk Sheriff does not play so that may result in more arrests which makes it appear there is more drug activity.
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Old 06-10-2014, 04:09 AM
 
Location: Atlanta/Tallahassee/Chicago/Lakeland
478 posts, read 892,850 times
Reputation: 314
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveSellingFLHomes View Post
I would venture to say Polk is no worse than any other area of Florida. However, the Polk Sheriff does not play so that may result in more arrests which makes it appear there is more drug activity.
Agreed!
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:51 AM
 
Location: SoCal
3,703 posts, read 2,513,117 times
Reputation: 2906
I get so tired of Grady Judd, the only sheriff I see on the news daily just about.
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