GOP lawyer steps down over raid of Florida analyst’s home
Ron Filipkowski resigned from his position after reading the search warrant used against COVID-19 data analyst Rebekah Jones.
Ron Filipkowski, a lifelong Republican and a former state and federal prosecutor, resigned from his role from the 12th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission after reviewing the warrant used to execute a raid on Rebekah Jones.
According to Tampa Bay Times, he stepped down from his role to call attention to how Gov. Ron DeSantis handled the raid. Filipkowski has served on the Judicial Nominating Commission for ten years and was appointed twice by former Gov. Rick Scott and once by DeSantis.
The report detailed the 52-year-old had growing frustrations with the current administration and how they handle “public access to truthful data” regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
The outlet reported, Filipkowski felt DeSantis’ response to COVID-19 was “reckless and irresponsible.” After the raid on Jones, he decided to disassociate from the current leaders.
“The recent events regarding public access to truthful data on the pandemic, and the specific treatment of Rebekah Jones has made the issue a legal one rather than just medical,’’ he wrote in a letter to the Governor’s general counsel. “…I no longer wish to serve the current government of Florida in any capacity.”
According to the news report, Filipkowski was inspired by former staff members of President Donald Trump, including Olivia Troye, Vice President Mike Pence’s former Homeland Security adviser. She resigned in September.
theGrio reported that armed agents swarmed Jones’s home after a warrant was issued after she was fired from the state’s Department of Health for refusing to “manipulate” COVID-19 data.
According to the report, agents pointed guns at her and her children. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said the raid was a seizure of computer equipment.
“They took my phone and the computer I use every day to post the case numbers in Florida, and school cases for the entire country. They took evidence of corruption at the state level. They claimed it was about a security breach. This was DeSantis. He sent the Gestapo,” she wrote.
After the raid, Filipkowski shared with a colleague that he felt the search and seizure were off. According to the Tampa Bay Times, the friend encouraged him to read the search warrant, which helped seal his decision.
“What’s the crime? The crime is hacking into an email server to tell people to tell the truth,’’ he said to the outlet. “That’s not a horrible crime if it’s a crime at all.”
“But this is different because now what you’re doing is using police powers. You’re using law enforcement in intimidating people who are trying to tell the truth and now we are crossing over to my whole life as a prosecutor, employer, crusader. This is wrong. He is taking it to a different level. “He continued, ” “If what she did is illegal, it pales in comparison to the harm she was trying to prevent.”
Jones is currently in search of a new job outside of Florida. A GoFundMe campaign for support to get a new computer and legal aid has reached over $200,000 of the $1,000,000 goal.
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