Man arrested for threatening to shoot protestors
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office announced Sunday that deputies arrested a man for making online threats to shoot protestors associated with the Black Lives Matter movement.
Polk County Sheriff’s Office informed HCSO that Alex Bancroft, 30, posted a threat on his Facebook account July 24 and told those who commented on his post to “keep ur eyes on Fla news.” HCSO said it later learned of an older Facebook post of his: “a photograph of playing cards from the game, ‘Cards Against Humanity.’ The prompt read, ‘That’s right. I killed _____. How, you ask? _____.’ Bancroft ordered the cards to read, ‘That’s right. I killed African children. How you ask? An AR-15 assault rifle.’” HCSO obtained a warrant for Bancroft’s arrest and attempted to serve it in Dover, but deputies found out he left Dover to stay with a friend in Clermont.
Bancroft was eventually arrested in Orlando by Orange County Sheriff’s Office at 11 p.m. July 25. He faces a felony charge of Written Threat to Kill or Do Bodily Injury.
Bancroft admitted to writing the posts “out of frustration” without intent to hurt anyone, HCSO said, but Sheriff Chad Chronister stressed that online threats are always going be taken seriously.
“The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office takes all threats to injure or kill others very seriously, and this includes threats made online on various social media platforms,” Chronister said.”HCSO’s mission to serve, protect and defend the citizens of Hillsborough County extends beyond the streets we patrol every day. If you think you can hide behind a computer screen when threatening to hurt another person, you are absolutely wrong. I want to thank our law enforcement partners, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and Orange County Sheriff’s Office, for their assistance throughout the course of this investigation.”
HCSO hosts graduation at festival grounds
Nineteen new deputies in Detention Class 2001 were sworn into office in Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office’s latest graduation ceremony.
The ceremony, held July 24 at the TECO Expo Hall at the Florida Strawberry Festival grounds, comes after the new deputies finished 24 weeks of training “significantly impacted” by COVID-19, the sheriff’s office said in a press release.
“For the safety of the cadets and training staff, extensive changes were made to their training schedule throughout the process due to the ongoing pandemic,” HCSO said in the release. “But despite the challenging circumstances, each of the cadets was able to take their state exam on time to graduate on (July 24). For the safety of law enforcement personnel, family and friends of the cadets, changes have been made to the traditional graduation ceremony as well, including a face covering requirement, limiting capacity, moving the graduation ceremony from Falkenburg Road Jail to the significantly larger TECO Expo Hall and spacing the loved ones of cadets six feet apart within the venue.”
This graduating class features cadets representing “five different nations” and five of the 19 grads are women.
“I couldn’t be more proud of all that these cadets have accomplished, as individuals and together as a class. Even in the best conditions, becoming a deputy is not an easy process, but the coronavirus made their training even more difficult,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said. “These deputies persevered. Their strong work ethic and determination are exactly what we need in public servants of Hillsborough County. We are grateful for their commitment to protect and serve our community.”
Girl Scouts create 24 new badges
Girl Scouts of West Central Florida and Girl Scouts of the USA have introduced 24 new badges in an effort to encourage girls to be ambitious, decisive leaders in traditionally male-dominated fields, GSWCF said in a July 21 press release.
The new badges apply to areas of automotive engineering, STEM, entrepreneurship and civics.
“Now more than ever, it’s critical that we have strong leaders who can make informed decisions that make the world a better, safe place,” GSUSA CEO Sylvia Acevedo said. “During our current health crisis, the world leaders who have been among the most decisive and effective in addressing the pandemic have been women. With these new badge experiences in STEM, entrepreneurship and the critically important subject of civics, Girl Scouts is continuing to build the transformational female leaders of today and the future and showing girls the power they have to truly change the world.”
New badges include:
- Toy Business Designer (Daisy)
- Budding Entrepreneur (Brownie)
- Business Jumpstart (Junior)
- Business Creator (Cadette)
- Business Startup (Senior)
- Entrepreneur Accelerator (Ambassador)
- STEM Career Exploration (Brownie, Junior and Cadette)
- Automotive Design (Daisy, Brownie and Junior)
- Automotive Engineering (Daisy, Brownie and Junior)
- Automotive Manufacturing (Daisy, Brownie and Junior)
- Democracy for Daisies
- Democracy for Brownies
- Democracy for Juniors
- Democracy for Cadettes
- Democracy for Seniors
- Democracy for Ambassadors
- Cyber Challenge (Cadette, Senior and Ambassador)