Polk Co. man wanted for ‘killing, sexual battery spree’ arrested by Atlanta PD

Polk County

POLK CO., Fla. (WFLA) — The Atlanta Police Department arrested the Frostproof man wanted in Polk County for first-degree murder, arson, kidnapping, and sexual battery Saturday.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said Taiwan Blandin, 30, was captured in Atlanta after an alleged carjacking at a convenience store. The Atlanta Police Department also arrested a woman accompanying Blandin.

Deputies said Blandin killed an 80-year-old substitute teacher in Frostproof earlier this month.

“We are grateful that this violent, armed, and dangerous suspect is in custody and his crime spree has come to an end,” Sheriff Grady Judd said. “The Atlanta Police Department did an awesome job. Based on the felonies he’s racked up, he likely won’t spend another day on the street. He’s behind bars where he belongs.”

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office had been searching for Blandin since Oct. 2, considering him ‘armed and dangerous.’

“He’s dangerous,” Judd said in a news conference. “When a man quits caring about himself and is ready to commit suicide, when he’s ready to commit suicide by cop – or said, ‘if the cops come to me, I’m going to shoot them’ – we take him at face value.”

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said Blandin committed a carjacking at a convenience store in Fulton County around 2:30 a.m. Saturday. Officers spotted the stolen vehicle shortly after and attempted a traffic stop. When they did, officers said Blandin fled. He was apprehended, however, after he crashed the car and attempted to flee on foot. Officers said Blandin was tased while attempting to resist arrest.

Officers recovered a gun from the stolen vehicle.

Blandin is facing multiple charges in Polk County and now Fulton County.

Polk County charges:

  • First-degree murder
  • First-degree arson
  • Armed kidnapping
  • Sexual battery with a deadly weapon
  • Armed burglary
  • Grand theft of a motor vehicle
  • Grand theft of a firearm
  • Tampering with physical evidence

Fulton County charges:

  • Carjacking
  • Escape
  • Aggravated assault
  • Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon
  • Fleeing to elude

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