May 29, 2024  – Markanthony Fernandez, 24, a Bartow Police Department officer, was arrested Tuesday after an investigation began on May 8. The incident happened on the weekend of Feb. 3 and involved two 18-year-old women, a 17-year-old girl and a 16-year-old girl.

“Fernandez recorded several videos,” the Polk County Sheriff’s Office says in a release. “One video showed one of the 18-year old girl’s wearing a Bartow PD jacket, while a 17-year old committed a sexual act on the 18-year-old at the urging of Fernandez. Several of the videos show the victims naked with Fernandez inside his residence.”

Deputies say Fernandez sent the videos to fellow officers at Bartow PD, who reported it to their supervisors.

Fernandez provided all four with alcoholic beverages, THC vape pens, and THC gummies, according to the sheriff’s office.