"Joker" arrested for vandalizing Polk deputy's car - WFLA News Channel 8

"Joker" arrested for vandalizing Polk deputy's car

Posted: Updated:
POLK COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

It's not exactly "Batman arrests Joker", but it's close. 

A man who left a note on the front door of a Polk deputy sheriff's residence after vandalizing the deputy's patrol car twice, vandalizing his personal vehicle and stealing items from both was arrested Friday. According to officials, the suspect also burglarized and vandalized another property in the area.  The note on the front door read: "The Joker is here! Jokes on you, Bi***. ******!"  

Matthew James Lash, 22, of Arrowhead Boulevard in South Lakeland is facing a list of charges including criminal mischief, petit theft, and firing a BB gun into a structure.

Deputies say Lash threw concrete blocks and concrete landscaping rocks at the patrol car early Tuesday morning causing $1,129 worth of damage shattering a window and stole a rechargeable Maglite flashlight from within the patrol car. Lash also broke out the windows of the deputy's personally owned pickup truck causing $1,769 worth of damages. 

The second incident occurred early Friday morning.  A man living in the same neighborhood reported that someone was attempting to open the sliding glass door into their bedroom.  As the man started to investigate, someone,later determined to be Lash, threw a landscape rock through their Florida room sliding glass door causing $3,000 worth of damage.  As the residents investigated further, they heard loud noises coming from the area of Matthew Lash's residence on Arrowhead Road. They also noticed that the deputy's driver's side window was broken out a second time. 

Deputies arrived and found Lash out in the street with a bb-gun rifle; he was acting erratically.  He was ordered back to his home but later came out with a box cutter.  He was then taken into custody.  The note was also found on the front door of the deputy's residence.

During interviews with Lash, he admitted to the vandalism and burglaries.  He later told deputies that he was drinking, got angry, and that he holds no ill will towards the deputy. 

"We take it very seriously when someone specifically targets a law enforcement officer at his home or at work," said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.  "When people target deputies and other public servants, they are targeting the community's public safety.  We don't take it as a joke and we will make sure "The Joker" is held accountable for his actions."

Lash was transported to the Polk County Jail where he is being held on no bond pending first appearance. 

  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • RECALL: Fruit at trader Joe's & Costco

    RECALL: Fruit at trader Joe's & Costco

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 12:20 PM EDT2014-07-22 16:20:35 GMT
    A Central California company has issued a voluntary nationwide recall of specific lots of its fresh peaches, plums, nectarines and pluots over concerns of possible listeria contamination.
    A Central California company has issued a voluntary nationwide recall of specific lots of its fresh peaches, plums, nectarines and pluots over concerns of possible listeria contamination.
  • How thieves clone your credit cards

    How thieves clone your credit cards

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 9:15 AM EDT2014-07-22 13:15:02 GMT
    File photoFile photo
    Patricia Stack didn't know her debit card number had been stolen until she tried to withdraw money from her bank account. "A couple weeks ago I tried to get money out to pay my power bill and there was nothing in it."
    Patricia Stack didn't know her debit card number had been stolen until she tried to withdraw money from her bank account. "A couple weeks ago I tried to get money out to pay my power bill and there was nothing in it."
  • How to find out if sinkholes are in your neighborhood

    How to find out if sinkholes are in your neighborhood

    Monday, July 21 2014 5:43 PM EDT2014-07-21 21:43:25 GMT
    A 2004 sinkhole in Deltona was four lanes wide. Associated Press file photoA 2004 sinkhole in Deltona was four lanes wide. Associated Press file photo
    Wondering if there are sinkholes in your neighborhood? Or, are you purchasing a home and want to know about sinkhole activity in the area?
    Wondering if there are sinkholes in your neighborhood? Or, are you purchasing a home and want to know about sinkhole activity in the area?
  • NewsMore>>

  • Couple arrested for having sex on Cortez Beach in front of beachgoers

    Couple arrested for having sex on Cortez Beach in front of beachgoers

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 1:08 PM EDT2014-07-22 17:08:35 GMT
    Bradenton Beach police officers were dispatched to Cortez Beach after a few people called 911 and complained about a couple having sex publicly, right next to a little girl on the beach.
    Bradenton Beach police officers were dispatched to Cortez Beach after a few people called 911 and complained about a couple having sex publicly, right next to a little girl on the beach.
  • Crist ahead in new WFLA poll on governor's race

    Crist ahead in new WFLA poll on governor's race

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 12:00 PM EDT2014-07-22 16:00:35 GMT
    Democrat Charlie Crist jumped to a six-point lead over Gov. Rick Scott in a new News Channel 8 gubernatorial race poll released today. Crist, the former governor running to reclaim his old job, is ahead 46-40, giving Crist the biggest margin registered in the poll since it launched this spring.
    Democrat Charlie Crist jumped to a six-point lead over Gov. Rick Scott in a new News Channel 8 gubernatorial race poll released today. Crist, the former governor running to reclaim his old job, is ahead 46-40, giving Crist the biggest margin registered in the poll since it launched this spring.
  • FOUND: Bradenton girl after argument with dad

    FOUND: Bradenton girl after argument with dad

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 10:27 AM EDT2014-07-22 14:27:44 GMT
    Bianca Unique Agustdottir, 11, had a fight with her dad at the apartment on 53rd Avenue West in Bradenton Monday evening, and disappeared for hours.
    Bianca Unique Agustdottir, 11, had a fight with her dad at the apartment on 53rd Avenue West in Bradenton Monday evening, and disappeared for hours.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Two found dead after welfare check in Hudson

    Two found dead after welfare check in Hudson

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 5:44 AM EDT2014-07-22 09:44:54 GMT
    Pasco deputies are investigating the circumstances of the death of two people in Hudson found on Clark Street late Monday night.
    Pasco deputies are investigating the circumstances of the death of two people in Hudson found on Clark Street late Monday night.
  • 'Faces of Meth' program launched by Sheriff's office

    'Faces of Meth' program launched by Sheriff's office

    Monday, July 21 2014 6:37 PM EDT2014-07-21 22:37:35 GMT
    'Faces of Meth' is a project of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.
    'Faces of Meth' is a project of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.
  • VIDEO: Cat vs. ham

    VIDEO: Cat vs. ham

    Monday, July 21 2014 5:59 PM EDT2014-07-21 21:59:09 GMT
    YouTube imageYouTube image
    If you have a pet, you've probably fed it a table scrap or two. So, you'll probably appreciate this video of a pudgy cat who has a surprising and humorous response when he's given a scrap of ham.
    If you have a pet, you've probably fed it a table scrap or two. So, you'll probably appreciate this video of a pudgy cat who has a surprising and humorous response when he's given a scrap of ham.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.