by J. C. McCallum
I want to make sure everybody knows: This is a peaceful protest. (Holds up photo of a peaceful protest). We encourage it. It’s the foundation of our country and we want people to peacefully protest when they feel the need. This is a riot. (Holds up photo of a riot). And this will get you locked up before quick in the state of Florida. Pay attention. We’ve got new law, and we’re going to use it if you make us. We’re going to protect the people. No longer will people walk up and surround you as a citizen of Florida or a or a visitor of Florida, surround you while you’re eating dinner at an outdoor café, in a big mob without there being immediate consequences… Grady Judd, Sheriff of Polk County, Florida.
The bill, which covers 61 pages, makes several changes to Florida criminal and administrative law, and will:
- Make it more difficult for cities and counties to reduce funding for law enforcement, allowing local elected officials to challenge those budget decisions, and giving the state power to approve or amend the local budget
- Allow those local governments to be sued if they fail to stop a riot
- Define “riot” as a violent public disturbance involving 3 or more people acting with common intent resulting in injury to others, damage to property, or the imminent danger of injury or damage
- Enhance penalties for people who commit crimes during a riot
- Create a new second-degree felony called an “aggravated riot,” which occurs when the riot has more than 25 participants, causes great bodily harm or more than $5,000 in property damage, uses or threatens to use a deadly weapon, or blocks roadways by force or threat of force
Read the rest at newsthud.com.