Florida Police Chiefs Association Update–Week of January 2, 2012

Jan 6, 2012


The following is an informational update on law enforcement news, events, legislative developments and meetings relating to the Florida Police Chiefs Association community for the week of January 2, 2012.  Click on the hyperlinks in bold type to access all information.

Should you have any questions or comments, please contact Florida Police Chiefs Association lobbyists, Colodny Fass.





In a deadly year for law enforcement, Florida leads the nation 

More law enforcement officers were killed in Florida than any other state in 2011, one of the deadliest years nationally in recent history.


FBI changes definition of rape to include men as victims  

The FBI is changing its long-standing definition of rape for the first time to include sexual assaults on males following persistent calls from victims’ advocates who claim that the offense, as currently defined in the agency’s annual crime report, has been undercounted for decades.


U.S. police fatalities up 13 percent in 2011 to 173

One Oregon police chief was killed when a man allegedly took the officer’s gun and shot him in the head.


Read the Entire Sarasota Herald-Tribune Series “Unfit to Oversee Law Enforcement” Here

SPECIAL REPORT: Police agencies undermine system

In early 1998, Leesburg city officials set out to fire Officer Anthony Brown after two of his confidential informants separately said they had sex with him.


Alachua County ranks third in Florida for hate crimes 

Alachua County was third among Florida’s 67 counties in the number of reported hate crimes in 2010, which local law enforcement officials say is due to greater awareness and more aggressive charging of such crimes.


Adams County hires consultant to help with jail overcrowding

The hiring this week of a consultant with a background in criminal-justice management is the first step toward solving conditions at the Adams County Jail, according to officials.


Gulf Breeze chief of police to retire on January 12

Gulf Breeze police Chief Peter Paulding announced Wednesday that he is retiring, effective January 12.


Miami-Dade commissioners refusal to force police unions to pay more for healthcare may lead to layoffs

Despite blunt warnings from Mayor Carlos Gimenez that their decision would force layoffs of hundreds of police and corrections officers, Miami-Dade commissioners Thursday narrowly refused to force two employee unions to contribute an additional 5 percent of their pay toward health insurance.


Dade police protest further proposed cuts

A budget battle is underway between the Miami-Dade County Commission and the Miami-Dade Police Department.





U.S. Department of Justice:  “Prisoners in 2010”

This report presents data on prisoners under the jurisdiction of federal and state correctional authorities on December 31, 2010.  The overall U.S. prison population declined in 2010 for the first time since 1972.  State and federal prisoners numbered 1,605,127 at yearend 2010, a decrease of 0.6% (9,228 prisoners) from yearend 2009.  The federal prison population increased by 0.8% (1,653 prisoners), while the number of prisoners under state authority declined by 0.8% (10,881 prisoners).  Half of state departments of corrections (25) reported decreases in their prison populations during 2010. California (down 6,213) and Georgia (down 4,207) reported the largest declines in absolute numbers, while Rhode Island (down 8.6%) and Georgia (down 7.9%) reported the largest percentage decrease.  During 2010, prison releases (708,677) exceeded prison admissions (703,798) for the first time since collecting jurisdictional data in 1977.


U.S. Department of Justice:  “Correctional Population in the United States, 2010”

This report presents statistics on the number of offenders under the supervision of adult correctional authorities in the United States at yearend 2010.  The adult correctional systems supervise offenders in the community under the authority of adult probation or parole agencies and those incarcerated in state or federal prisons or local jails.  During 2010, the number of persons under supervision of adult correctional authorities declined by 1.3% (91,700 offenders), reaching 7.1 million.  This was the second consecutive year of decline in the correctional population, dropping below the 2006 level (7.2 million).  At yearend 2010, the total number of offenders under the supervision of the adult correctional authorities represented about 3.0% of adults in the U.S. resident population, or 1 in every 33 adults.  The rate of adults under correctional supervision has remained relatively stable since 2000 (3.1%).


U.S. Department of Justice:  “Federal Justice Statistics, 2009”

This report describes the annual activity, workloads, and outcomes associated with the federal criminal justice system from arrest to imprisonment.  Tables and text describe a surge in federal justice activity, especially in the area of immigration enforcement.  The bulletin also examines cases and their legal outcomes by type of legal representation, including private counsel, public defenders, and appointed counsel.  It provides data on sentences imposed and their lengths by type of offense.  During 2009, the number of suspects arrested for a federal offense reached a record level of 183,986 suspects, up from 140,200 in 2005.  Drug offender cases remained the most prevalent at adjudication and sentencing, in prison, and under supervision.  Five judicial districts along the U.S.-Mexico border accounted for more than half (56%) of all federal arrests in 2009.


The New York Times:  “In Florida, Using Military Discipline to Help Veterans in Prison”

Florida is one of a handful of states that are rethinking their treatment of incarcerated veterans in the hopes of easing their transition back to society and keeping them out of prison for good.  The state recently created a program that provides separate dorms in five prisons for honorably discharged military veterans who have no more than three years left on their sentences and who volunteer for it.  By housing the men together, the state has an easier time in providing services. Six months before their release, the inmates meet with an official from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to get information and help with applications.  They also receive counseling for post-traumatic stress disorder, if needed, and classes on how to prepare for jobs and for the mental and emotional hurdles they are expected to face in civilian life.





SB 1160 Relating to Pinellas Police Standards Council, Pinellas County by Senator Dennis Jones

Similar to HB 871, SB 1160 would amend chapter 72-666 by increasing a court cost to fund the Pinellas Police Standards Council Standards Council.  Effective Date: Upon becoming a law.


HB 835 Relating to Law Enforcement and Correctional Officers by State Representative Luis Garcia Jr.

HB 835 provides that a law enforcement officer or correctional officer who is adversely impacted by failure of law enforcement or correctional agency and who is required to comply with part VI, ch. 112, F.S. would be able to petition the circuit court in a county where a law enforcement or correctional agency maintains its headquarters for relief to enjoin the agency from violation and compel it to perform duties imposed by part VI, ch. 112, F.S.   Effective Date:  July 1, 2012


HB 847 Relating to Resisting an Officer or Other Specified Person Without Violence by State Representative Perry Thurston Jr.

In regard to an act relating to resisting an officer or other specified person without violence, HB 847 would amend s. 843.02, F.S. to provide that a finding of resistance, obstruction or opposition must be based on factors other than mere flight from an officer or other person to whom the law applies.  Effective Date:  July 1, 2012


HB 899 Relating to Regulation of Firearms and Ammunition by State Representative Alan Williams

HB 899 would amend the “Joe Carlucci Uniform Firearms Act (‘Act’)” to eliminate amendments made to it by ch. 2011-109, L.O.F., and to restore it as it existed prior to enactment of ch. 2011-109, L.O.F. on October 1, 2011.  HB 899 further would revise provisions of law that preempt to the State the entire field of firearms regulation and also provide that the preemption does not affect zoning ordinances that encompass firearms businesses, along with other businesses.  The bill specifies that certain zoning ordinances would be in conflict with the preemption and are prohibited.  It also would reinstate a limited exception to such preemption that authorizes a county to have the option to adopt an ordinance that requires a waiting period of up to three working days between the purchase and delivery of a handgun.  It also provides requirements and limitations with respect to the adoption of a waiting-period ordinance and would eliminate provisions that prohibit knowing and willful violation of the Florida Legislature’s occupation of the whole field of regulation of firearms and ammunition by enactment or causation of enforcement of any local ordinance or administrative rule or regulation.  Effective Date: October 1, 2012


HB 1309 Relating to Retirement by State Representative Dwayne Taylor

HB 1309 would revise and provide provisions of law relating to the Florida Retirement System (“FRS”), including definitions, election of benefits, employer and employee contributions, investment plans, pension plans, the Florida Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP) and retiree health insurance subsidies to reverse changes in the FRS made by ch. 2011-68, L.O.F.