Florida prosecutor blasts DeSantis' 'ridiculous witch hunt'
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks to guests at the Republican Jewish Coalition Annual Leadership Meeting on November 19, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently booted a Tampa prosecutor from office after he refused to enforce state abortion laws — a move a federal judge declared unconstitutional. Now he has his sights trained on another local prosecutor: Orlando-based State Attorney Monique Worrell. His general counsel has sent her a warning letter demanding she provide an explanation of how she handled a case.

But in an interview with The Daily Beast, Worrell called the move a "ridiculous witch hunt" — and revealed the real reason Florida Republicans want her out.

"Last Wednesday, law enforcement arrested 19-year-old Keith Moses as the prime suspect in the appalling murders of T’Yonna Major, Natacha Augustin, and Spectrum News 13 reporter Dylan Lyons. According to prosecutors, Moses gunned down Augustin, before returning to the scene and firing into the crowd, killing Lyons and Major, and injuring another journalist and Major’s mother," reported Eileen Grench. "Days later, Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) and DeSantis both piled on criticism of Worrell’s handling of Moses’ prior cases, many of which took place before her term. (Moses’ 'lengthy criminal history' included gun charges, aggravated battery and assault with a deadly weapon, burglary and grand theft charges, [Orange County Sheriff John] Mina told reporters.)"

But according to Worrell, Mina himself wants her out of office and is using the governor's office to oust her — and DeSantis is happy to cooperate, despite the sheriff being a Democrat, because he "wants full control over Florida politics and he doesn't respect the will of the electorate."

"Despite Mina complaining that Moses was never convicted for his acts as a juvenile, she said, no juvenile technically gets a 'conviction,' and anyone speaking about a juvenile's prior misdemeanors is violating Florida law," said the report. "And, as the Tampa Bay Times reported on Thursday, the sheriff’s office has admitted it was them who failed to test DNA samples on a gun found in Moses’ only previous arrest as an adult."

Mark NeJame, a lawyer representing two of Moses' alleged victims agrees, according to the report: "What DeSantis and Scott have done is intentionally tried to mislead and confuse the public so they don't have to deal with the real issue of gun violence and sane gun laws," he said.

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