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Feb 23, 2024

Family Support contract worker for DCF and her boyfriend arrested following Lakeland crash

Media Contact: Brian Bruchey, PIO

A family support worker who does contract work for the Florida Department of Children and Families was arrested by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office Wednesday afternoon, February 21, 2024, after she lied to a PCSO deputy during a crash investigation.

23-year old Taylor Harris from Tampa was charged with Providing False Information to a Law Enforcement Officer during an Investigation (M1). 

Ms. Harris was involved in a two-vehicle crash in the area of Wabash Avenue and Memorial Boulevard in Lakeland at around 4:45 pm.

During the crash investigation, Harris told a deputy that she was driving her white 2013 Hyundai sedan when she collided with a white 2019 Toyota 4Runner, but a witness told the deputy that a man was driving the Hyundai, and he fled into a nearby Burger King after the crash.

Deputies found the male driver hiding in the Burger King restroom. He was identified as 20-year old La’Darion Chandler of Lakeland—a known gang member with an extensive criminal history.

“I’m shocked that someone entrusted to help children through DCF would make such poor choices. She lied to deputies and tried to cover for her gang-member boyfriend—these are monumentally bad choices. If you associate with bad people, you’ll experience bad things. La’Darion Chandler is a bad person who just bonded out of jail on February 9th for an aggravated assault charge. Then he cut off his ankle monitor, caused a crash, and ran away.” Grady Judd, Sheriff.

La’Darion Chandler was arrested and charged with: Tampering with Electronic Monitor Device (F3), Criminal Mischief (F3), Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Property Damage (M2), and Driving While License Suspended/Revoked (M2). 

Because of his new charges and his pending Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon Charge, Chandler will not be eligible for a new bond.

Chandler’s prior criminal history includes arrests for burglary, grand theft, vehicle theft, fraud, fleeing to elude, and a 1st Degree Murder charge that was dropped after two witnesses changed their initial statements and refused to cooperate further with prosecutors.

Taylor Harris is employed by the Children’s Network of Hillsborough County and does contract work for DCF as a family support worker. Any inquiries regarding her employment status should be directed to the Children’s Network.