A Polk County Sheriff’s Office deputy has been terminated from his position after allegedly leading deputies on a high-speed chase in Lakeland, Florida. The incident occurred on Sunday when a deputy observed Jakob Kite, 22, driving a Subaru Impreza at speeds of 105 mph in a 60 mph zone. Another deputy later witnessed Kite reaching speeds of 114 and 117 mph while en route to Bartow.
A pursuit ensued, with speeds reaching up to 130 mph in a 45 mph zone. Kite reportedly refused to stop for deputies, ran a stop sign, and collided with a concrete median on Hwy. 540A. During the chase, Kite allegedly swerved aggressively towards one of the deputy’s patrol vehicles, narrowly avoiding a collision.
Deputies utilized a PIT maneuver to immobilize Kite’s vehicle. After initially refusing to exit the car, Kite was eventually taken into custody. He was suspected of driving under the influence and subsequently tested for breath alcohol levels, which measured at 0.035 and 0.034.
Kite now faces multiple charges, including aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, resisting with and without violence, fleeing to elude, leaving the scene of a crash with property damage, reckless driving, and DUI. Additionally, he received citations for four speeding violations and running a stop sign.
Following his arrest, Kite resigned from his position with the sheriff’s office. Sheriff Grady Judd expressed disappointment and anger towards Kite’s reckless behavior, stating that it was unacceptable for any responsible citizen, let alone a deputy sheriff. Judd emphasized that Kite would have been fired if he had not resigned and assured that he would be held accountable for his criminal conduct.
Kite is currently being held at the Polk County Jail on an $8,500 bond.