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News and Investigations

News & Investigations

News Releases and Public Information

Welcome to the Polk County Sheriff's Office News Room, where the Public Information Officers (PIO's) post all of the information that they release to the news media. PIO's act as liaisons between news media organizations and the Sheriff's Office. The PIO's routinely release timely and accurate information and Crime Stoppers bulletins, and respond to routine and "breaking news" media inquiries. News releases and Crime Stoppers information can be found on this page.

PCSO's full-time Public Information Officers are Brian Bruchey, Carrie Horstman, and Alicia Manautou. The Public Information Officers can be reached by sending an e-mail collectively at

The recent news releases sent out by the PIOs can be found here, and archived releases (older than 2017) can be found here.

Feb 15, 2023

Operation Pop Top: Sales clerk arrested for illegal alcohol sales

Media Contact: Brian Bruchey, PIO

Deputies from the Polk County Sheriff's Office checked five Frostproof area convenience stores on Monday, February 13, 2023 and found that one was not compliant with the state's alcohol sales law that prohibits alcohol sales to people under the age of 21 years.

These checks are part of the ongoing Operation Pop Top campaign. Deputies are assisted by a juvenile who is enrolled in the PCSO Explorers, a program for high school students who are interested in a career in law enforcement.

21-year old Brittney Mason, a sales clerk at the Citgo station at 203 Scenic Highway in Frostproof, was arrested after she sold an alcoholic beverage to a 17-year old Explorer.

"The stores and clerks in this county must check identifications of those purchasing alcohol. We will continue to spot-check stores across Polk County to make sure that they're not endangering our children by selling alcohol to them, nor selling alcohol to any adults under the age of 21 as the law prohibits." - Grady Judd, Sheriff

The other four Frostproof stores which were checked and found to be compliant were: Sunoco (5321 US 27), Town Star (7030 US 27), Marathon (5320 US 27), and Citgo (917 Scenic Highway).