criminal justice

MGN Online

Florida lawmakers are already moving forward a bill to reform the state’s juvenile justice system. The measure aims to address abuses within the system outlined in a Miami Herald investigative series.

MGN Online

Should inmates be criminally charged when cell phones are found on their person? In Florida prisons, that can occur. But, in county jails, not so much. During a recent legislative debate, lawmakers discussed a bill making it illegal for local jail inmates to have cell phones within the facilities.

Sen. Randolph Bracy (D-Ocoee)
Florida House of Representatives

Shortly after lawmakers gavel in the 2018 session they’ll start working on measures in committee.  A Senate Criminal Justice panel will take up a raft of reforms including Sen. Randolph Bracy’s (D- Ocoee) bill raising the threshold for felony theft.

MGN Online

Floridians have until Sunday to file a claim against three rental car companies for wrongfully charging them for its e-Toll services.

Sean Locke / iStockphoto

Fighting contraband has been an ongoing issue within the state’s prison system. Florida’s prison chief is exploring some innovative ideas to address that issue.

MGN Online

The costs to settle outstanding prison lawsuits could mean less money to spend on Florida Department of Corrections’ priorities. That’s the message from the new Florida Senate Budget chair.

Pasco County Sheriff's Office

A bill funding a unique facility to help solve cold cases is starting to move forward in the Florida House.

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

Floridians could soon vote on a proposal to grant victims more rights during court proceedings. That matter will first go before the Florida Constitution Revision Commission—which meets every 20 years to revise the state’s constitution. Voters would later have their say on the 2018 ballot.

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A proposal changing the eligibility requirements for becoming a judge in a state or county court is starting to move in a committee of the Constitution Revision Commission. That’s the panel that meets every 20 years to revise the state constitution and put the matter before voters.

Monticello-Jefferson County / https://monticellojeffersonfl.com/

Alfred “Mac” McNeill will serve as the interim sheriff of Jefferson County. The appointment follows the death this week of Sheriff David Hobbs.

Florida Supreme Court

The Florida Supreme Court is blocking a request that a justice recuse herself from a high profile case. A day after the League of Women Voters countered accusations that Justice Barbara Pariente was politicking from the bench, the state's highest court has agreed: there's no there there.

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A proposal increasing the mandatory retirement age for Florida judges has unanimously passed a subpanel of the state’s Constitution Revision Commission. That’s the panel that meets every 20 years to revise the state constitution.

Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles facebook

Starting Wednesday, the Florida Highway Patrol is expected to step up its presence for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

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An organization that deals a lot with human trafficked kids says it’s important to go into the schools and educate potential victims early about traffickers.

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Florida’s prison population appears to be on the decline.

Sen. Jeff Brandes (R-St. Petersburg)
Nick Evans

A bipartisan coalition of Florida lawmakers are pushing two criminal justice reforms meant to roll back mass incarceration.

Florida Channel

Bills aimed at making it easier for human trafficking victims to sue their traffickers have passed a House committee.

Florida Guardian Ad Litem Facebook

Bills aimed at fixing a glitch in a Florida law have cleared their first legislative committees in the House and Senate. The two measures could get more pro bono attorneys to help kids with special needs.

Florida Channel

In the coming weeks, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice will be putting the finishing touches on a newly created office where juveniles and their families can raise concerns. That’s just one of the reforms the head of DJJ recently told a group of lawmakers, who had some suggestions of their own to address abuses within the system outlined in a Miami Herald investigative series.

Florida Department of Corrections

Despite a series of efforts, the Florida Department of Corrections is still facing a significant staffing shortage. The agency’s vacancy rates have more than doubled in the last year.

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Amid an ongoing lawsuit, the Florida Department of Corrections is now asking the legislature for more than $19 million in funding to treat inmates with the Hepatitis C virus.

Kate Payne via WFSU

City and county officials are butting heads over how to respond to violent crime in Leon County. The area has seen a spate of killings recently, and it’s not clear how local governments will respond.

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You haven’t done anything wrong, but you’re pulled over anyway. The law enforcement officer asks to search your car. Should that officer be required to tell you about your right to decline the search? Florida lawmakers have started discussions about that very topic for the 2018 legislative session.

MGN Online

Florida lawmakers are expected next week to hold committee hearings about the Miami Herald’s investigative series into the Department of Juvenile Justice.

FDLE facebook page

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is marking its 50th year in existence. In 1967, the Florida legislature merged the duties and responsibilities of several state criminal justice organizations to create the Bureau of Law Enforcement—its former name. FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen says at the time, the agency had more than 90 members and a budget of $1.5 million.

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