The Politization of Florida Law Enforcement

Sheriff Chad Chronister and the Fascist DeSantis last week

Well Trump wannabee Ron DeSantis. in endeavoring to be the heir apparent and neo-fascist Duce. showed this week that he can be as vindictive as his Dyed Blond Don and abuse power just a well.  I wonder what nickname Trump will have for him if they square off in Republican primaries.

Little Ronnie?

Last week our Florida Governor removed the State Attorney Andrew Warren of Hillsborough County (Tampa) for “dereliction of duty.”

One of the chief responsibilities of state attorneys like Warren is to decide which cases to prosecute using the state’s limited resources and which charges to file in a given case.

The Florida Supreme Court ruled in a 2017 case that prosecutorial discretion does not allow state attorneys to make blanket statements that they will not prosecute certain types of crimes and must make decisions on a case-by-case basis.

The Republican governor suspended Warren on the pretext that the Democratic prosecutor failed to enforce certain criminal cases. Of the two examples the governor gave, one isn’t a crime in Florida and the other hasn’t landed on Warren’s desk.

DeSantis was referring to prosecuting doctors who provide abortions beyond the new statutory 15 weeks (no case has as yet landed on Warren’s desk) and the second was prosecuting doctors wh0 provide care to trans-youth (which is not yet a crime in Florida)

Warren signed a nation-wide letter along with hundreds of prosecuting attorneys indicating that they would use their prosecutorial discretion in decidng which cases to take to court.

DeSantis characterized the twice elected State Attorney as “Soros backed.”  Nothing political about that.  Warren fired back “Today’s political stunt is an illegal overreach that continues a dangerous pattern by Ron DeSantis of using his office to further his own political ambition. It spits in the face of the voters of Hillsborough County who have twice elected me to serve them, not Ron DeSantis.”

Warren is heading to the Court to get his job back.  Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, the most sinister aspect of all this is the politicization of the County Sheriffs around the region standing on stage behind the Governor.    Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister showed either terrible judgement or no balls at all in fueling this partisan circus. “Chronister joined the governor’s announcement at the sheriff’s office and stood on stage with other conservative props, including two of Florida’s showboating sheriffs, Polk’s Grady Judd and Pasco’s Chris Nocco, (my Sheriff) to paint Warren as “soft on crime.”

Grady Judd in particular is the caricature of a southern sheriff, calling DeSantis the “greatest governor in the nation” and advising those moving into Florida “not to vote like you did up north.”  His comments concerning Warren mentioned not a word on abortion or doctors treating trans-youth; only violence in democratic cities caused by those “soft on crime” libs.

“Nobody in Hillsborough cares what Judd or Nocco think. Voters here elected Warren, and Chronister, too, and expect them to work together under the checks-and-balances system to bring criminals to justice. Police and prosecutors have different jobs, and tension between them is natural and healthy. Besides, Chronister and former Tampa police Chief Brian Dugan — who also appeared at DeSantis’ event — have found common ground with Warren before; both worked with Warren to expand second-chance programs for young offenders. It’s an example of the compassionate thing being the right thing” said the editorial in the Tampa Bay Times.

It’s not like Warren is letting murderers go free.  He has stated he will use his lawful discretion in determining which cases to prosecute.  You know – like a a doctor who treats a raped pregnant 10 year old.

“That’s why the sheriffs damaged far more than Warren with their show of force Thursday. Only two years after the George Floyd riots sparked a wakening for police reform across the country, the sheriffs lent their credibility to a governor with a terrible record on free speech and equal justice for the purposes of ousting a progressive prosecutor whom the voters twice elected. It was an arrogant display of contempt for prosecutorial discretion and the sheriffs’ role in local law enforcement.”

Yup.

Those cops can go into the black and brown neighborhoods to build relationships” looking crisp and dutiful in their collar pins, patches and guns having forgotten hat the uniform they wear and the authority it conveys belongs to the public – not a political party.  Not a Governor. Not an election campaign.

Warren’s removal was ugly; IMHO an abuse of power by DeSantis which I hope is reversed.

The ugliest part of this whole affair however is the politization of law enforcement and the creeping return of the southern sheriff which us old guys remember all too well.  DeSantis will oust a State Attorney who says he will use his discretion in enforcing abortion law but has done nothing about Sheriffs who have stated that they will not enforce gun laws

Sheriff Grady Judd of Polk County – a Tampa suburb

 

 

 

 

About toritto

I was born during year four of the reign of Emperor Tiberius Claudius on the outskirts of the empire in Brooklyn. I married my high school sweetheart, the girl I took to the prom and we were together for forty years until her passing in 2004. We had four kids together and buried two together. I had a successful career in Corporate America (never got rich but made a living) and traveled the world. I am currently retired in the Tampa Bay metro area and live alone. One of my daughters is close by and one within a morning’s drive. They call their pops everyday. I try to write poetry (not very well), and about family. Occasionally I will try a historical piece relating to politics. :-)
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4 Responses to The Politization of Florida Law Enforcement

  1. beth says:

    absolute insanity

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Don Ostertag says:

    And this is person who the GOP will run for the presidency.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. beetleypete says:

    Yet another shock decision, to add to the many already made. It seems that the gun-crazy voters might well be sleep-walking into a dictatorship. But once they wake up, they will realise it is too late to do anything about it. Then they might just get angry, and go out and shoot a lot of people for no reason…
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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