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FDLE Seeks Millions From Florida Legislature To Fight Mass Shootings

Oct 2, 2019
http://swfpca.org

A project designed to detect “homegrown violent extremists and lone actors” before they attack is estimated to cost the Florida Department of Law Enforcement millions of dollars --- and agency officials want lawmakers to start paying for parts of it next year. 

Bill Would Move Concealed Weapons Licenses To FDLE

Nov 30, 2018

The state’s concealed-weapons licensing program would be moved to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, under a measure proposed Thursday by Sen. Lauren Book, D-Plantation. 

Roberto Roldan / WUSF Public Media

The commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said he is “deeply troubled” that Attorney General Pam Bondi thought he would not pursue investigations into potential criminal activity related to last week’s elections.

WUSF Public Media

In an unusual move, Attorney General Pam Bondi on Sunday publicly criticized Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Rick Swearingen for not pursuing an investigation into alleged irregularities in the handling of election ballots in Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Police Solve Cold Case Using Family-Uploaded DNA

Nov 8, 2018

Police have arrested a suspect in connection with a 2001 Orlando murder case. Detectives used DNA evidence uploaded to the internet by the suspect’s relatives.

Parents worried about their kids’ safety this Halloween can download a free mobile app that will tell them if there are any sexual predators living in the area where they plan to go trick-or-treating.

RYAN BENK / WJCT NEWS

Tampa Bay area counties – including Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Hernando, Polk, Manatee and Sarasota  - all saw decreases in total  crime between 3.3 and 14.2 percent, according to the 2017 Uniform Crime Report, which was released Tuesday. 

FDLE Agent Named To Oversee School Safety

May 3, 2018

A longtime agent with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement will direct the state’s Office of Safe Schools, which was created after a mass shooting in February that left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County. 

Google Maps

Florida is upgrading the website that allows people to find out the location of sexual offenders and sexual predators.

The Florida Channel

Maintaining his innocence after a special master concluded he had engaged in a pattern of sexual harassment for years, Sen. Jack Latvala announced Wednesday he will quit his legislative post.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement wants to revise a law further cracking down on sex offenders that was slated to take effect a couple months ago.

Florida's Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys was a horror tale come to life.

"There's just too many stories," Roger Kiser, who was at the school in the 1950s, told NPR in 2012. "I know of one [boy] that I personally saw die in the bathtub that had been beaten half to death. I thought he'd been mauled by the dogs because I thought he had ran. I never did find out the true story on that. There was the boy I saw who was dead who came out of the dryer. They put him in one of those large dryers."

Florida will begin a nationwide search to find the heads of two state agencies.

Gov. Rick Scott called for the search Tuesday after the Florida Senate didn't confirm Scott's picks for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

The agencies report to both Scott and the three elected members of the Cabinet.

Katy Hennig / USF News

UPDATE 3/18/15 10:45 a.m.
Updated headline to indicate the Florida Department of Law Enforcement will conduct "an inquiry" and not "an investigation" into USF's findings.

In an email sent to WUSF 89.7 News Wednesday morning, FDLE Communications Director Gretl Plessinger said, "We are conducting a preliminary inquiry to assess any new information from the January USF report.  If there is criminal predicate, we will open an investigation."

ORIGINAL POST 3/17/15 5 p.m.
With a single sentence, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement indicated it will look into what investigators from the University of South Florida have turned up at the Dozier School for Boys in the Panhandle town of Marianna.

The Florida Cabinet squared off again Tuesday on the issue of reviewing and replacing agency leaders.  Much of Governor Rick Scott’s plan was either thrown out or put off to a later date. 

Katy Hennig / USF News

Florida Senator Bill Nelson has asked the Department of Justice - and not Florida law enforcement officials - to open an investigation into the Dozier School for Boys.

In 2009, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement concluded there was no criminal wrongdoing at the now closed Marianna reform school, despite decades of allegations of abuse of students by school officials.

On the brink of this year's legislative session, Governor Rick Scott is dealing with a big thorn. Scott replaced former head of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Gerald Bailey, saying Bailey left voluntarily.

Bailey says that's a lie. 

When Governor Scott's lawyer told Bailey to retire, Bailey did pack up his stuff and leave. A few days later, Scott said Bailey resigned. Bailey said that wasn't true and called the governor a liar in the public square. Things rapidly went down from there.

State of Florida

Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam is asking the head of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to evaluate new findings in the history of students at the former Arthur G. Dozier school for boys.

In a letter dated Wednesday, Putnam — who is one of three members of the Florida Cabinet — cited a recent report by researchers at the University of South Florida.

WFSU

Gov. Rick Scott has rejected a request from Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater to consider a search for a new head of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Scott wants the cabinet to consider changes at the departments of insurance regulation, financial regulation, and revenue. The exchange comes as Democratic lawmakers call for an investigation into the ouster of former FDLE head Gerald Bailey.

A former Florida Department of Law Enforcement official is accusing Governor Rick Scott of political payback after he removed Gerald Bailey as head of FDLE. It’s not unusual for a governor to shuffle agency heads at the start of a second term, but in Bailey’s case, the issue is about how and why his departure occurred.

Two of Governor Rick Scott’s new agency leaders earned cabinet-level approval Tuesday, but Scott still isn’t saying why he let go of one his longest-serving agency secretaries.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Gerald Bailey has been replaced by Rick Swearingen.  Scott was twice asked by reporters Tuesday why Bailey was let go but didn’t answer the question.

During their first week back, Florida lawmakers discussed some ways to reform the state’s prison system—currently plagued by allegations of inmate abuse by prison guards and cover ups.

Sen. Greg Evers (R-Baker) chairs the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. And, during a recent hearing, he briefed lawmakers on an overview of what’s been going on with the troubled prison system.

Some Florida lawmakers are questioning whether the state’s prison agency plagued by allegations of inmate abuse can be trusted to accurately report suspicious inmate deaths. That issue arose in a Senate Criminal Justice Committee hearing Monday.

Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement

UPDATED 6:25 a.m. 2/26/14: According to a press release sent just before 2 a.m. by the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, 15 year old Zach Brown returned safely on his own to his Land O ' Lakes home.

ORIGINAL POST 12:15 a.m. 2/26/14: Authorities are looking for a missing teenage boy who may be in danger after he apparently walked away from his Land O' Lakes home Tuesday afternoon.

According to a release from the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, 15 year old Zach Brown left around 5:20 p.m. after an argument over being banned from Facebook.

FDLE Operation Arrests 15 for Solicitation

Oct 21, 2013
http://swfpca.org

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement's Operation e-Guardian ended this morning with the arrest of 15 people.

The operation e-Guardian was launched last Wednesday to try and find predators that use the internet to harm children.

The 15 men were charged with the online solicitation of a minor for sex. Those charged ranged in age from 23 to 68 years old.

Special Agent Chuck McMullen says this is the first of its kind.