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Former Florida State Attorney Criticizes DeSantis, Accusing Loss of Democracy

Monique Worrell, the former Orlando State Attorney, who was suspended from her post by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, is asserting that her removal signifies “the loss of democracy.” DeSantis suspended Worrell, citing her failure to fulfill her responsibilities in handling criminal cases.

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In response, DeSantis’ office released a statement explaining that Worrell’s practices and policies led to reduced sentences for murderers, violent offenders, and drug traffickers, allowing them to evade the appropriate consequences for their criminal actions.

Some offenders even escaped incarceration entirely.

According to the statement, Worrell’s actions compromise Florida law and put the safety and well-being of the communities she was elected to serve at risk.

Worrell held a press conference following her suspension, where she labeled her removal as a “loss of democracy.” She criticized DeSantis, referring to him as a “weak dictator.” Despite accusations of allowing offenders to escape proper punishment, Worrell maintained that she had fulfilled her duties as the duly elected State Attorney for the Ninth Judicial Circuit.

She further criticized her suspension as a strategy to divert attention from what she characterized as DeSantis’s struggling presidential campaign, comparing him unfavorably to former President Donald Trump.

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Credits: DepositPhotos

Worrell believed that her suspension was intended to provide positive media coverage for DeSantis and energize his base. DeSantis, who is running for president, discussed the suspension in a news conference alongside other Florida officials.

The officials highlighted instances where Worrell allegedly avoided imposing mandatory minimum sentences for gun and drug-related crimes, neglected to pursue severe charges for juvenile offenders, and limited charges against child pornography offenders.

Governor DeSantis asserted that he was confident the Florida constitution granted him the authority to remove Worrell from her position. This is the second instance where DeSantis has taken significant action against a Florida prosecutor for alleged failures in their duties.

In August 2022, he suspended Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren for refusing to enforce the state’s abortion ban. DeSantis’s decision to suspend Warren was upheld in court, further bolstering his stance on holding prosecutors accountable.

The governor is now appointing Florida judge Andrew Bain to replace Worrell as the state attorney for the Ninth Judicial Circuit.

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