Florida Fix: Oct 24

Your quick fix of the latest in Florida politics, law and policy. Week of Oct 24

  • Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has hired outside counsel in his effort to maintain his suspension of Scott Israel of Broward Sheriff’s Office. The Florida Senate will decide Israel’s fate Wednesday. Gov. DeSantis suspended Israel just three days after taking office in the wake of the Parkland shooting. Parents of the victims from Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS are highly outspoken against Israel’s return, but Israel does maintain some support from the community. An arbiter has recommended that Israel return to his post. South Florida Sun Sentinel.
  • Meanwhile, Florida’s Risk Protection Court is up and running and has confiscated thousands of guns since its creation by the so-called “Red Flag” law passed in March 2018. It impacts those deemed too dangerous to have firearms. The process is initiated by law enforcement stemming from a criminal matter or Baker Act; family can also step in. Tampa Bay Times.
  • The execution of James Dailey, 73, is scheduled for Nov. 7 despite evidence of his innocence. Dailey is convicted of killing Shelly Boggio. The man who implicated Dailey, Jack Pearcy, has since sworn in an affidavit that Pearcy actually acted alone. Dailey, who has almost no history whatsoever (a “civilian conviction” for a bar fight), is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and served three tours in Vietnam. The man who implicated him, Pearcy, has an extensive criminal history and was sentenced to life in prison–not the death penalty. South Florida Sun Sentinel.
  • Florida’s foster kids who refuse placement would be subject to secure detention under a new proposal set forth by the Hillsborough juvenile justice advisory board. The Department of Children and Families is backing the plan to court-order kids who refuse placement into a secure detention facility for 90 days. Kids who refuse placement on average have gone through 36 placements already by the time they refuse one. There is no legislation just yet. [As a former juvenile defender, just — YIKES. Kids involved with DCF and/or the juvenile justice system have been traumatized enough; they need therapy, not jail]. Tampa Bay Times.

Wow. Pretty heavy, right?

I feel like we need a happy manatee to bring it back up.

A Manatee in the Crytal River, Florida.

What a cutie! Have a good week, folks.