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Florida Supreme Court Upholds DeSantis’ Suspension of State Prosecutor


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Thursday, Florida’s top court said no to a suspended state attorney’s request to return to work. Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, fired her last year as the second Democratic prosecutor he suspended.

Six of the nine judges on the Supreme Court did not agree with a petition from Monique Worrell, a suspended state attorney from the 9th Judicial Circuit that serves metro Orlando. Most of the justices didn’t agree with her claims that DeSantis’ reasons for suspending her weren’t clear enough or that the suspension got in the way of her legally exercising her prosecutorial authority.

She said that Worrell put the public in her central Florida district at risk by not prosecuting crimes made by minors and not pushing for mandatory minimum sentences for gun crimes.

After being suspended, Worrell said it was because of politics since DeSantis was running for the GOP presidential ticket at the time. She said that the state law only lets an elected official be fired for very bad behavior and that she was just doing her job the way she thought was right.

DeSantis chose five of the judges on the Supreme Court.

In a separate ruling, Justice Jorge Labarga, who was appointed by Gov. Charlie Crist in 2009, said that because Florida is such a big state, state attorneys should be able to decide how to handle the unique problems in each community.

Labarga wrote that if that doesn’t happen, whenever state attorneys decide which cases to pursue, they “may also face suspension and replacement, even though having been overwhelmingly elected by the voters of the circuit,”

Andrew Warren was twice elected as a Democrat in Tampa and was fired last year because he signed pledges that he would not bring criminal charges against people who seek or provide abortion or gender transition treatments. Warren also had policies that said he would not bring charges for certain low-level crimes.

Andrew Bain was chosen by DeSantis to replace Worrell as Orange County Circuit Judge. Bain and Worrell are likely to run against each other for the job this year.

Source of Information – AP

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