HEADLINE: ACLU challenges drug testing of Fla. state workers
CAPTION: The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida is suing Florida Gov. Rick Scott over ordering drug testing for all state employees, regardless of suspicion. (June 1)
(sot: Howard Simon, Executive Director, ACLU of Florida)
We only have the capacity to deal with about 2 a week. And this Governor and this legislature is manufacturing legal challenges. I want to say this should be a civics lesson for the people of Florida. Thank God the entire government is not run by the governor’s office or by the legislature. We have a third branch of government, which is the courts and it’s now time for the courts to step up and protect the citizens of Florida from the abuse of their rights.
The state’s own test showed that welfare recipients don’t have a rate of drug abuse any more so than people who are not on welfare. Nothing had demonstrated that state employees are drug abusers. The only thing that has changed is the radical politics of this governor, not welfare recipients and not state employees.
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Walter Scott Shooting FULL STORY | White Police Officer Shoots Unarmed Black Man to Death | VIDEO
It looks like the officer goes back to pick up something and then drops it by the body he’s just shot’. CBS Legal Analyst: ‘Highly Unlikely’ Charleston Cop Would Be in Jail Without Video
Here’s A News Report We’d Be Reading If Walter Scott’s Killing Wasn’t On Video
(Huffington Post) A North Charleston police officer was forced to use his service weapon Saturday during a scuffle with a suspect who tried to overpower him and seize the officer’s Taser, authorities said.
The man, who has a history of violence and a long arrest record, died on the scene as a result of the encounter, despite officers performing CPR and delivering first aid, according to police reports
The shooting was the 11th this year by a South Carolina police officer. The State Law Enforcement Division has begun an investigation into the incident.
Police identified the officer involved as Patrolman 1st Class Michael Thomas Slager and the suspect as Walter Lamar Scott, 50, of Meadowlawn Drive in West Ashley. Slager, 33, served honorably in the military before joining the North Charleston Police Department more than five years ago. He has never been disciplined during his time on the force, his attorney said.
The incident occurred behind a pawn shop on Craig Street and Remount Road. Slager initially pulled Scott over for a broken taillight. During the stop, police and witnesses say Scott fled the vehicle on foot. When Slager caught up with him a short distance from the street, Scott reportedly attempted to overpower Slager. Police say that during the struggle, the man gained control of the Taser and attempted to use it against the officer.
It was during that scuffle that the officer fired his service weapon, fatally wounding Scott.
“Shots fired, and the subject is down. He took my Taser,” Slager radioed immediately following the shooting.
Slager “felt threatened and reached for his department-issued firearm and fired his weapon,” his attorney said in a statement on Sunday. “I believe once the community hears all the facts of this shooting, they’ll have a better understanding of the circumstances surrounding this investigation.”
Saturday’s encounter bears similarities to the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, which kicked off a national conversation about the use of force by police. Authorities there ultimately determined that Brown had attempted to overpower Officer Darren Wilson and run before turning back and charging the officer, who was forced to deploy his service weapon in the encounter.
Slager was placed on administrative duty, pending the outcome of the state investigation.
RAW VIDEO FOOTAGE: https://youtu.be/kXO3Ix_GIyI
South Carolina officer charged with shooting unarmed black man
(CBS News) Warning: The video above contains graphic content. A white police officer was charged with murder Tuesday after a video surfaced showing him shooting Walter Scott, an apparently unarmed black man in South Carolina. Officer Michael Slager’s case is the latest in a series of racially-charged police shootings around the country. Vicente Arenas reports from Charleston, South Carolina, where the killing happened over the weekend.
Related: Walter Scott Shooting VIDEO: Police Officer Michael Slager Shoots Black Man Multiple Times in Back
Walter Scott Family: There Are Some Bad Cops Out There
2015 april footage Video Rating: / 5
The USDA did a series of Spanish radio ads aimed at getting immigrants on Food Stamps.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has been running radio ads for the past four months encouraging those eligible to enroll. The campaign is targeted at the elderly, working poor, the unemployed and Hispanics.
The department is spending between .5 million and million on paid spots, and free public service announcements are also airing. The campaign can be heard in California, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, and the New York metro area.
“Research has shown that many people — particularly underserved seniors, working poor, and legal immigrants — do not understand the requirements of the program,” said Kevin Concannon, a USDA under secretary.
The radio ads, which run through June 30, come amid a bitter partisan fight over the safety net program. Republican lawmakers want to reduce funding for the benefit or turn it into a block grant program, which would also minimize the cost. Democrats, however, are not willing to make major cuts. Video Rating: / 5
A white South Carolina police officer was arrested and charged with murder Tuesday after video showed him fatally shooting a fleeing, unarmed black man in the back.
North Charleston Police Officer Michael T. Slager, 33, can be seen shooting 50-year-old Walter Scott after a confrontation on Saturday, according to The Post and Courier. Slager chases Scott and shoots at him eight times in the video recorded by a passerby and obtained by The New York Times.
Scott died there, though it wasn’t clear if he died immediately.
The graphic video raises questions about Slager’s original assertion that he used his gun because he felt endangered.
The confrontation started when Slager had reportedly pulled over Scott because of a broken taillight. It escalated into a foot chase as Scott allegedly fled because there were family court-issued warrants for his arrest. Slager pursued Scott into a grassy lot and claimed that he fired his Taser to subdue him.
Moments later, Slager reported on his radio, “Shots fired and the subject is down. He took my Taser,” according to the Times.
Earlier this week, an attorney for Slager said the cop felt threatened after Scott tried to overpower him and take his Taser. Today that attorney told The Post and Courier that he’s “no longer involved” in the case.
But first images in the video are of Slager shooting at Scott as he runs away from him. It also appears that Slager drops the Taser near Scott after he was gunned down, according to The New York Times.
Police reports also say that responding officers performed CPR and delivered medical aid to Scott, but the video shows Scott face down in handcuffs for several minutes after the shooting. Another officer shows up and appears to give Scott aid, but never performs CPR.
Scott had been arrested about 10 times in the past, mostly for failing to pay child support or show up for hearings, according to the paper.
“He has four children, he doesn’t have some type of big violent past or arrest record. He had a job, he was engaged,” a lawyer for Scott’s family told the Times. “He had back child support and didn’t want to go to jail for back child support.”
In a statement released Tuesday night, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (R) said, “What happened in this case is not acceptable in South Carolina.” Senator Tim Scott (R) said “The senseless shooting and taking of Walter Scott’s life was absolutely unnecessary and avoidable,” adding that he would be watching the case closely.
The shooting in North Charleston comes on the heels of several high-profile cases of police officers using deadly force against unarmed black men in Ferguson, Missouri, Cleveland and New York. This is one of the few times the offending officer has been charged with murder.
“What if there was no video? What if there was no witness? Where would we be without that video,” Justin Bamberg said at a presser with the family on Tuesday night. Bamburg is one of the Scotts’ family attorneys and also represents South Carolina’s House District 90.
Family attorney L. Chris Stewart called the witness who recorded the video a “hero,” saying that video evidence disproved initial reports that Scott reached for the Slager’s Taser. Stewart added that the witness is working with investigators and may eventually come forward.
Bamberg told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell that the witness contacted the family following the shooting. They were the first to watch the video.
“If there was no video, I do not believe that officer would be in jail,” Bamberg said. “From what the video shows, I think that provides the necessary ammunition to hold this officer accountable.”
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, a state agency also known as SLED, was later contacted and promptly launched an investigation.
“I don’t think anybody can see that and not see that what that officer did was murder Mr. Scott in cold blood,” Bamberg said. “What would have happened if this witness did not have the courage to stand up and do the right thing and decide that what he witnessed was wrong? I’m glad we don’t have to ponder that.”
Stewart also said that they will file a civil lawsuit. The family urged the public to fight for justice legally instead of through violence.
“We can’t get my brother back,” Scott’s brother Anthony said. “I don’t think all police officers are bad cops, but there are some bad ones out there.”
“I had two brothers, now I have one,” he said tearing up. He recalled his brother as an outgoing man who served in the Coast Guard and was a fan of the Dallas Cowboys. Video Rating: / 5
The Palmetto State might owe its infamous reputation for dirty political tricks to one man: Republican political operative Lee Atwater.
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South Carolina: A History Of Dirty Tricks | Long Story Short | NBC News
James A. Scott
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
email Email Me
James A. Scott, a Martindale-Hubbell-AV-rated lawyer and former member of the Florida Senate for 24 years, is chairman and a founding director of Tripp Scott. He has more than three decades of experience as a lawyer in Florida and has an accomplished tenure as a legislator. He focuses his practice on government relations, commercial and civil litigation, real estate and healthcare law.
Scott has handled numerous high-profile and complex matters on behalf of his clients, including representing the Florida Senate in the 2002 redistricting plan and related federal and state litigation and serving as local counsel in the Florida election recount of 2000.
While serving in the Senate, Scott earned a reputation as a highly effective legislator and successfully spearheaded reforms in healthcare, public education and criminal justice. He served as Senate president from 1994 to 1996 and in many other of the Senate’s most important roles, including chairman of every major committee, including Rules and Appropriations. Scott also held leadership positions with the Banking and Insurance, Regulated Industries and Judiciary Committees.
Scott served on the Broward County Commission from December 2000 to November 2006. He previously served as the Broward County representative on the Metropolitan Planning Organization and the Broward County representative to the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority (SFRTA). Scott also served as lieutenant commander and legal officer of the U.S. Coast Guard. He is a founding member of the board of directors of Legal Aid Service of Broward County and is active in the Fort Lauderdale and Boca Raton chambers of commerce.
Scott has received numerous awards and recognitions for his charitable and community contributions including Preservation 2000 Future Generation Award, Children’s Home Society, and the B’nai B’rith Torch of Liberty Award. In addition, Florida Atlantic University, Davie Campus, named its Education and Science Building the “Senator James A. Scott Education and Science Building” in his honor.
Scott holds a law degree and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kentucky.
Areas of Practice:
General Commercial Litigation
U.S. Supreme Court
University of Kentucky College of Law, Lexington, Kentucky
University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
Professional Associations and Memberships:
Kentucky Bar Association
Broward County Bar Association
Member, Board of Directors
South Palm Beach Bar Association
American Bar Association
Florida State Senate, 1976 – Present
Florida State Senate, 1980 – 1982
Florida State Senate, 1986 – 1988
The Senate Appropriations Chairman
Florida State Senate, 1992 – 1993
The Senate Appropriations Chairman
Florida State Senate, 1988 – 1990
Rules and Calendar Chairman
Florida State Senate, 1994 – 1996
The Florida Bar
Legal Aid Service of Broward County
Founding Member, Board of Directors
Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce
Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce
Past Employment Positions:
Deerfield, Municipal Judge, 1976
Subject: DEPT OF REVENUE. LEGAL AID
Dear Ms. Demosthenes,
Thank you for your email to the Florida Department of Revenue in which you expressed your issue with the Okeechobee County Planning and Development Department’s denial of your permit application to add a garage behind your privacy fence on your 1.24-acre lot.
This matter does not fall under the jurisdiction of the Department of Revenue. The Okeechobee County Planning and Development Department has the authority to approve or deny permit applications in their jurisdiction.
I understand from your email to the Department of Revenue that you have already contacted the Okeechobee County Planning and Development Department to discuss the denial of your application. You may want to contact your county commission to ask if they can provide additional assistance regarding this matter. The Okeechobee County Commission’s contact information is available at http://www.co.okeechobee.fl.us/contact.
If you have questions about property tax in the future, we invite you to contact us through our e-portal system atDORPTO@dor.state.fl.us.
Because the Department of Revenue does not administer property tax, this response is not a policy statement or interpretation of state law or rules but is provided for your information and assistance. We hope the general information provided in this response is helpful to you.
From: “Ward, Kimberly” -Kimberly.Ward@djj.state.fl.us-
Date: October 5, 2015 at 5:02:42 PM EDT
To: Marie K Demosthenes -firstname.lastname@example.org-
Subject: RE: Please help
I am receipt of your email; however, our agency cannot assist you. We suggest you contact your local legal aid society or the Florida Barâ€™s attorney referral service for assistance. Please see links below.
Florida Bar Lawyer Referral Service: http://www.floridabar.org/tfb/TFBConsum.nsf/48E76203493B82AD852567090070C9B9/EC2322E512B83D1E85256B2F006CC812?OpenDocument.
Kimberly Sisko Ward
Assistant General Counsel
Department of Juvenile Justice
Office of General Counsel
2737 Centerview Drive, Suite 3200
Tallahassee, FL 32399-3100
From: Marie K Demosthenes [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, October 05, 2015 1:22 AM
To: Ward, Kimberly
Subject: Please help
I believe you were notified in our office on September 10, in the notice of denial of the permit application sent on September 14, and in an email sent on September 29 that county regulations do not allow for an accessory structure such as a garage or shed to be placed on a parcel unless there is first a principle structure. In your situation, that would be a residential dwelling complying with the countyâ€™s appearance and design standards. There is not anything we can do about your situation at this time. When you are ready to put a house on your parcel, let us know and we will provide whatever assistance we can in processing your permit application.
Planning and Development Department
1700 NW 9th Avenue, Suite A
Okeechobee, FL 34972
Phone (863) 763-5548
Fax (863) 763-5276
With your help there will be a favorable resolution ALL I NEED IS TO ADD A GARAGE BEHIND MY 6’TALL PRIVACY FENCE ON MY 1.24 ACRE LOT. I CANNOT SEE HOW THIS WILL LOWER THE VALUE OF THE 4 HOUSES ON THE STREET OR THE COW RANCH ADJACENT TO THE STREET. I REQUEST YOUR HELP BECAUSE THIS WILL SAVE MY LIFE
On Sep 16, 2015, at 1:38 PM, “Patty Burnette” -firstname.lastname@example.org- wrote:
Good Afternoon Ms. Demosthenes.
I want to let you know I am in receipt of your email regarding a denial letter for the construction of a shed that you received from the County Planning and Zoning Department. The property County of Okeechobeeâ€™s jurisdiction and not the City of Okeechobee. The City would not have any authority over the property, so I have forwarded all your correspondence received by the City to Mr. Bill Royce with the Okeechobee County Planning and Zoning Department. His email email@example.com his phone number is 863-763-5548.
Hopefully you will be able to receive some solution to your situation.