In The Public Interest



Florida in Debate Over Murder Charges for Drug Dealers Whose Buyers Die


The move from Ohio to Florida was supposed to be a new beginning. On June 29, 2018, Timothy Sexton wrote on Facebook that he was nervous and excited to start his new job in Jacksonville. Though he’d miss his girlfriend and young son, who planned to join him in a few weeks, he wrote “it’s what’s best for my family, and I.” But the move turned out to be anything but the happy beginning the young...

With High Murder Rate, Jacksonville to Vote for Change or Status Quo in Mayoral Election


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — In 2018 Jacksonville was the per capita murder capital of Florida. But that barely made news, since Jacksonville has been the murder capital among large cities in Florida since 2001. With the mayor’s election on Tuesday, the city has a choice: Keep doing what it’s doing, or try a different tactic. In 2015, Republican Lenny Curry won a narrow victory to defeat incumbent...

Many Justice Reforms Are Proposed for Florida’s Legislative Session; Will Any Survive?


By Deirdra Funcheon  Thanks to decades of tough-on-crime policies, Florida now has the third-largest prison population in the United States — nearly 100,000 people, including more minors than any other state. Florida requires people to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences and has abolished parole. All this costs taxpayers $2.4 billion per year.  In the 1980s and 1990s, the crack epidemic...

Florida’s new governor keeps surprising everyone. What could that mean for criminal justice reform?

Excel23 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], from Wikimedia Commons

Editor’s note: Jaxlookout is partnering with The Center For Sustainable Journalism at Kennesaw State University to produce a series of articles that focus on Criminal Justice. This article, while not specific to Jacksonville, provides statewide context and examines recent announcements by new Governor Ron DeSantis which are relevant to the discussion. Further articles will follow. This story was...

Jacksonville lags behind in fight against crime.


Jacksonville FL, December 2, 2018  – Mayor Lenny Curry’s anti-crime report card is in, and the results don’t look good. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement tracks those statistics, and the comparisons of first half of  of 2017 vs. 2018 show Duval 7.1% below the statewide average and as much as 16% below the achievments of other major metro areas in the state. On December 1...

Citizens Demand Gun Controls


Jacksonville FL, December 1, 2018 – Local gun laws were a hot topic among the public who spoke at the Jacksonville City Council meeting held Tuesday, November 27, 2018, where many citizens repeated their mantra: “Close the gun show loophole.” During public comments, Northside Coalition leader Ben Frazier invoked this year’s murders of seven-year-olds Tashawn Gallon and Heidy Rivas-Villanueva, as...

Smart justice demands bail bond reforms in Jacksonville


Jacksonville FL, November 14, 2018 – The bail reform movement is gaining momentum around the country, with many states and individual jurisdictions turning to non-monetary forms of release in an effort to reduce jail populations and costs. In addition, there is a growing recognition that the money bail system has a disparate impact on minorities and the poor but does little, if anything, to serve...

Crime: Leaders lament city’s failure to intervene


Jacksonville FL, November 11, 2018 – This has all happened before, and until people get serious about addressing the root causes of crime, it will all happen again. That’s the reaction of many people familiar with the city of Jacksonville’s efforts to combat violent crime. Per capita Jacksonville has long had the highest crime and murder rates in Florida. “We know what the problem is,” said...

In The Public Interest


Recent Comments

Recent Posts