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Monday, May 21, 2018
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Winter Haven man accused of using pit bull in robbery try

A man is facing attempted robbery charges after he ordered his pit bull to attack a bicyclist in an attempt to take the victim’s bike, Winter Haven police said.

About 10:10 a.m. Friday, David Heilman, 44, of Winter Haven was riding south on the Chain of Lakes Trail near the Carefree Cove Bridge. Meanwhile, Erin Jamal Martin, 23, of Winter Haven was walking a pit bull. When the men passed, Martin yelled at Heilman to stop and give him the bike, which Martin said was his, police said.

Heilman told Martin that he had bought the bike and started to ride away when he heard Martin order the dog to attack, police said. The dog chased Heilman, who was eventually able to get far enough away and the dog retreated. Heilman located a call box on the trail and contacted police.

Officers located Martin at his home along with a dog fitting the description of the dog that chased Heilman.

Martin was arrested and booked into the Polk County Jail.

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