Chief Investigator Billy Lane is a retired career law enforcement detective with twenty years of distinguished service. During his years of service as an undercover detective, Chief Lane gained valuable knowledge and experience conducting intense investigations involving narcotics trafficking, vice crimes, and criminal street gangs on both the local and federal level. Chief Lane is well versed in both local and federal criminal investigations and is an expert in the field of covert stationary and mobile surveillance. In addition to numerous awards and decorations, Chief Lane was the recipient of the coveted “Detective of the Year” for his investigative prowess.
Chief Lane spent nine years as a uniformed police officer and crime scene technician where he responded to police calls for service. Chief Lane was promoted to Detective where he was assigned to the Intelligence Unit investigating gain related crimes and eventually became a Certified Forensic Computer Examiner (CFCE) with IACIS. Chief Lane spent the next six years as a CFCE investigating child porn, homicide, and other computer-related cases. Chief Lane was also a long term member of MAGTF (Multi Agency Gang Task Force) where he worked in conjunction with other agencies to combat criminal street gang violence.
Chief Lane completed his remaining five years of service working undercover in the narcotics unit where he was tasked with writing search warrants and investigating narcotics violations. While in the narcotics unit he was deputized as a Federal Task Force Officer with the United States Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, where he was tasked with working undercover, rescuing human trafficking victims and also assisted the Homeland Security Investigations SRT Team with federal search warrants.
Chief Lane was also attached to the diplomatic protection detail while assigned to the intelligence unit where he assisted on Presidential Protection details for George Bush and Barack Obama and other political dignitaries as both an intelligence officer and armed diplomatic protection agent.
Since his separation from law enforcement, Chief Lane founded Prison Break Investigations and created a criminal defense based, private investigative agency that employs former law enforcement officers. Chief Lane has been a licensed Private Investigator since 2015, where he has worked criminal defense and specializes in covert surveillance.
Chief Lane holds numerous certifications to include:
• Certified Diplomatic Protection Professional (ITAC Services)
• Diplomatic Protection – Lakeland Police Department
• FCIC Certification – Florida Department of Law Enforcement
• Identity Theft - Office of the Florida Attorney General
• Basic Street Gang Certification – Lakeland Police Department
• Specialized Counter Terrorism & Mail Security – Florida Department of Law Enforcement
• IS-00100 Intro to Incident Command System – FEMA
• IS-00200 ICS for Single Resource – FEMA
• IS-00300 National Incident Management System – FEMA
• IS-00800 National Response Framework - FEMA
• Advance Taser Certification – Lakeland Police Department
• Counter Terrorist Threat Detection - Florida Intelligence Unit
• Basic Data Recovery – National White Collar Crime Center
• Intermediate Data Recovery – National White Collar Crime Center
• Secure Techniques for Onsite Preview – National White Collar Crime Center
• Certified Forensic Computer Examiner – International Association of Computer Investigative Specialists
• Cell Phone Forensic Course – High Tech Crime Institute
• Forensic Imaging Techniques – University of South Florida
• GPS Mobile Tracking Devices - Cobham
• Electronics and Technical Surveillance – National Technical Investigator’s Association
• Domestic Terrorism – Florida Intelligence Unit
• Russian Organized Crime – Florida Intelligence Unit
• Title 19 Cross Federal Training Designation Training - Homeland Security Investigations
• Certified Clandestine Laboratory Investigator – DEA
• Certified Clandestine Laboratory Site Safety Officer – DEA
Assistant Chief Investigator Donald Heacox
Assistant Chief Heacox retired from the Lakeland Police Department as a Sergeant after twenty years of service. During his time at the police department he served in the uniformed patrol division for four years, the neighborhood liaison unit for three years, and the uniformed patrol division as a sergeant for thirteen years. During his twenty years of service he completed several advanced courses in death investigation, investigative techniques, interview and interrogation, tactical drug operations, internal affairs investigation, field training officer, gang investigations, Pepperball armorer and instructor, line supervision, National Incident Management System, ethics in supervision, conflict resolution, personnel management, performance evaluation, and intracity middle management. He was also a certified gang liaison officer, a uniformed crime scene technician, a domestic abuse response team sergeant, a senior member of the Dive Team, and a certified Crisis Intervention Team sergeant. In addition to numerous awards and decorations, Assistant Chief Heacox was the recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal and the Life Saving Medal.
Assistant Chief Heacox is a cum laude graduate of Florida Southern College and Polk State College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminology and an Associate in Arts degree in Criminal Justice respectively. Prior to attending college, he completed four years of active duty in the U.S. Army serving in the Republic of Panama and Fort Devens in Massachusetts receiving an Honorable Discharge. In the army Assistant Chief Heacox was awarded the Army Service award, National Defense Service Medal, Army Achievement Medal (2nd Oak Leaf Cluster), Army Good Conduct Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Expert Marksmen Badge (rifle, grenade, and machine gun), Air Crewman Wings, Driver Badge, and the Jungle Expert Badge.
Assistant Chief Heacox has been a Licensed Private Investigator in the State of Florida since May 2017 and is a member of the Florida Association of Licensed Investigators, the National Association of Sentencing Advocates and Mitigation Specialists, the National Defender Investigator Association, the National Legal Aid and Defender Association, and the National Association for Public Defense.
Eric Zelaya is a Board Certified Criminal Defense Investigator specializing in homicides and other violent felonies. Eric Zelaya currently possesses 7 year’s experience working for attorneys in the 5th, 9th, 10th and 18th circuits as well as federal public defender court appointments in the Middle District of Florida. Eric is a recognized gang specialist and has been a consultant for WKMG News Channel 6 in Orlando and various attorneys in Central Florida. Eric has taken numerous courses through the Multi Agency Counterdrug Task Force, Florida Gang Investigator Association, Texas A&M University as well as FDLE courses during his time at the Florida Dept of Corrections, in which he was a maximum security confinement officer and a member of the Gang Investigations Unit . Eric holds certifications in drug investigations, homicide/death investigations as well as gang investigations. In addition, Eric has been a licensed EMT since 2009.
Tim Ellis is a retired Deputy Sheriff who began his law enforcement career in 1992 after earning a B.S. in electrical engineering from Mississippi State University. He holds State of Florida certifications in at-scene traffic homicide and advanced traffic crash investigation, field training officer, K-9 Instructor (patrol), and K-9 Narcotics instructor. He spent time in each discipline, with the majority being as a working K-9 handler and unit trainer.
Following his retirement, Tim began working in criminal defense investigations in 2011 and is a State of Florida licensed private investigator. He has conducted investigations within several Florida Judicial Circuits for various private attorney clients as well as State of Florida court appointed cases. His experience includes trial testimony at both the state and federal level and he has been previously qualified in federal court as an expert witness in police K-9 procedures and training.
Jill Tuman is an experienced law enforcement officer and healthcare professional with a demonstrated history of working in the investigations industry. She holds a B.S. degree in Criminal Justice/ Police Science from the University of Florida, as well as an A.S. degree in Dental Hygiene from Santa Fe College. She has spent over twenty-five years as an educator, business development coordinator, and a distinguished career as a police officer, were she was a member of a sexual battery task force. Jill brings a vast array of life experiences which make her a valuable asset.
The Honorable Morris West
Mayor of the City of Haines City, Florida
Morris West is a Haines City and Polk County native, a Bethune Cookman College graduate. He has spent his entire adult life engaging in the community; with a resume of community service to include his role as a little league football coach, participation in Keep Polk County Beautiful clean up events, Rotary, NAACP, and Co-Founder of the Northeast Revitalization Group, business manager for Mid-Florida Youth Sports, HOA and School Advisory Boards. He is a retired Police Chief, graduate and active member of the FBI National Academy. He is the Chief Operating Officer for United Protective Security Services. West was elected to the Haines City Commission in 2016 and currently serving as Mayor. He is a member of the Florida League of Mayors, a representative for the Ridge League of Cities on the Central Florida Regional Planning Council, a member of the Florida Black Caucus of Elected Officials, and a member of the Florida League of Cities Land Use and Economic Development Committee. He serves as a representative for the Haines City EDC and Chamber of Commerce. He is a representative for Polk Regional Water Cooperative, a member of the East Polk Ridge Advocacy board. Additionally, he is very involved with the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity whose motto is “Culture for Service and Service for Humanity”. The service philosophy was instilled in him by his parents and his alma mater, Bethune Cookman University who instilled the service philosophy in him to “enter to learn and depart to serve.” He asserts for that reason he has always been and will continue to be a civic minded and employee-centric.
Kristi Allaire worked at the Auburndale Police Department for 22 years before retiring in July of 2018. During her time at Auburndale Police Department she worked as a patrol officer until she was assigned to the Community Oriented Policing Unit where assignments included bicycle patrol, neighborhood meetings, and building and strengthening relationships between our agency and the community. She became a field-training officer and trained several new officers for the department. Next, she transferred into the Criminal Investigations Unit where she served as a detective investigating all crimes to include gang related crimes. She was selected to serve a term on a regional High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program where she worked in an undercover capacity. She then returned to the Criminal Investigations Unit where she worked all types of cases eventually specializing in major crimes such as Special Victims, Child Protection, Elderly Abuse, and Homicide.
Kristi had attended several advanced courses specializing in homicide, gang intelligence, social media, interview and interrogations, field training officer, narcotics investigations, tactical entry basic and advanced, domestic violence, human trafficking, dui, missing persons, sexual battery, elderly abuse, and child abuse.