Florida Sheriffs Association Announces 2016 Legislator of the Year and Legislative Champions
Tallahassee, Fla. (April 11, 2016) – Each year the Florida Sheriffs Association (FSA) recognizes several exemplary state legislators for their significant contributions to and support of good public safety policies during legislative session. These legislators have demonstrated a commitment to protecting the best interests of Florida citizens through their diligent legislative efforts and support of FSA initiatives.
This year, the Florida Sheriffs Association names Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla as the 2016 Legislator of the Year for his commitment to the safety of our citizens. His role in ensuring a common sense approach to conceal carry legislation exemplified what we expect of our elected officials and his unwavering support for reasonable solutions proposed by Florida’s sheriffs demonstrated his commitment to Florida’s citizens and visitors.
“The Florida Sheriffs Association is honored to recognize Senator Diaz de la Portilla for his continued support and commitment to the public safety,” said FSA President and Alachua County Sheriff Sadie Darnell. “We were grateful for the opportunity to work with a senator so dedicated to the citizens this legislative session.”
The FSA also recognizes 15 additional House and Senate members as Legislative Champions during this legislative session for their support of FSA legislative priorities as well as their passionate support of smart public safety policy, including those that sponsored legislation that reforming death benefits for families of fallen officers.
“This session, the Florida Legislature has made taking care of law enforcement officers a priority through the passage of the Deputy Pine bill (SB 7012), which reforms the death benefits for families of fallen officers,” said FSA’s Legislative Chair and Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri. “These legislators helped make this bill a reality, along with numerous other important public safety bills, which will make a difference in the lives of many.”
2016 Florida Sheriffs Association’s Legislative Champions:
· Sen. Rob Bradley
· Sen. Alan Hays
· Sen. Arthenia Joyner
· Sen. Jack Latvala
· Sen. Garrett Richter
· Sen. Jeremy Ring
· Sen. David Simmons
· Sen. Chris Smith
· Rep. Shawn Harrison
· Rep. Shevrin Jones
· Rep. Dave Kerner
· Rep. Chris Latvala
· Rep. Kathleen Passidomo
· Rep. Rene Plasencia
· Rep. Cyndi Stevenson
“Without the aid of these important state legislators, the Florida Sheriffs Association would not be able to serve the citizens of Florida to the best of our ability,” said FSA Executive Director Steve Casey. “On behalf of the entire Florida Sheriffs Association, I would like to honor these men and women for doing their part to help keep Floridians safe.”
Pictures provided by: Eric Kopp
W/M; DOB: 5/25/02
4’9”; 120 lbs.
Blond hair; blue eyes
Last seen wearing: black sweat pants; white shirt with unknown print; no shoes
Last seen on May 10, 2016 at 2200 block of SE 29 Street, Okeechobee, FL
If you have any information regarding the juvenile’s whereabouts, contact Detective Bryan Lowe at (863)763-3117, ext. 5110 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-273-8477.
Law Enforcement Torch Run 2016/BBQ Rib Dinner for Special Olympics
Thank you to all the participants in this year’s Law Enforcement Torch Run. Every year our run in Okeechobee continues to grow with more and more runners. This year we also had a few bicyclists. Thank you to Courtney Lapp of Tin Fish Restaurant, John Geitner of Seacoast Bank, Sylvia at Zippy’s Wings, Bruce and Mary Ann Swinford of Big Lake Missions, Publix, Shirley Willis of Edward Jones, Cy of Bernie Little and OCSO Food Service.
Also, thank you to everyone that purchased a BBQ rib dinner.
Nicole Owens and Scott Videl were each presented with a Certificate of Appreciation.
On February 26, 2016, 9 year old Clayton Wolf was walking to a friend’s house. Neighbor Nicole Owens heard a terrifying scream and ran down her driveway to see what the screams were about. As she got to the gate she could see several dogs and one was attacking Clayton. Nicole ran up and grabbed the dog. The dog then turned and bit Nicole. Another neighbor, Scott Videl heard screaming and dogs barking. He grabbed his keys and a golf club, jumped into his truck and went to the area the screams and barking were coming from. He saw a dog attacking Nicole and Clayton. Scott was able to fend off the dog from attacking any more until help arrived. Nicole and Clayton have each recovered from the attack.
Undersheriff Noel Stephen stated, “The Sheriff's Office wanted to recognize these citizens for going above and beyond. Their actions, without a doubt, saved this young man’s life! We get so busy with life to just say "Thank you" sometimes and this was the least we could do.”
Thank you to Nicole and Scott for your quick actions and selfless act of heroism.
(pictured left to right, Undersheriff Noel Stephen, Nicole Owens, Clayton Wolf, Scott Videl and Animal Control Sgt. Arlene Durbin)