State attorney’s review of Salaythis Melvin shooting ongoing more than a year later
Protesters continue to demand answers after fatal deputy-involved shooting of Salaythis Melvin Protesters again gathered at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office Friday to demand accountability, and answers, following a fatal deputy-involved shooting at the Florida Mall earlier this month. ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — The Orange-Osceola County State Attorney’s office said Wednesday that it is still working on its review of the shooting of Salaythis Melvin more than a year after his death. Melvin was shot and killed last August outside the Florida Mall after the sheriff’s office said Deputy James Montiel feared for his life when Melvin started to face him while holding a gun in his waistband. >>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<The Florida Department of Law Enforcement turned over its findings to the state attorney’s office on Nov. 5, two days after the election and two months before State Attorney Monique Worrell assumed office. We have been working diligently to clear the numerous investigations that were waiting on the new administration.wftv.com
Happening at 3 p.m.: Osceola sheriff to announce new narcotics unit
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. — Osceola County Sheriff Marcos Lopez is set to announce a new Osceola County narcotics unit Monday afternoon. Lopez is scheduled to make the announcement at the sheriff’s office at 3 p.m.>>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<Click here to watch the news conference live. The announcement comes a week after board members voted to dissolve the Osceola County Investigative Bureau, a multi-jurisdictional anti-drug task force that targeted mid to upper-level drug traffickers. READ: Orange-Osceola state attorney launching new narcotics unit to investigate drug traffickingOn Monday, Orange-Osceola State Attorney Monique Worrell also announced a new narcotics unit to investigate and prosecute high-level drug trafficking cases. Stay tuned to Channel 9 Eyewitness News for updates.wftv.com
Orange-Osceola state attorney launching new narcotics unit to investigate drug trafficking
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. — Orange-Osceola State Attorney Monique Worrell announced Monday a new narcotics unit to investigate and prosecute high-level drug trafficking cases. >>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<She said incarceration cannot be the only method to crack down on drug crimes. READ: Osceola County to offer COVID-19 vaccines for students ages 5 and up this weekShe said there are suppliers being arrested, but there are also those who are addicted. She said the new unit will help differentiate between the exploited and the exploiters will be a priority of the new unit of state attorneys assigned to the unit. READ: Sheriff: Osceola County deputy fired after helping cousin run from deputiesThe new unit is launching a week after board members voted to dissolve the Osceola County Investigative Bureau, a multi-jurisdictional anti-drug task force that targeted mid to upper-level drug traffickers.wftv.com
Orange-Osceola state attorney forms committee to bridge gap between residents, justice system
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Orange-Osceola State Attorney Monique Worrell is trying to bridge the gap between Central Florida residents and the criminal justice system. But she says it won’t work without input from the community. >>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<Worrell brought together a group of community members to be a part of a team to bring that accountability and empowerment to her office. READ: State attorney Worrell announces new traffic homicide unit to handle backlog of casesWorrell met with the Community Engagement Committee to talk about how it will help address major issues in Orange and Osceola counties, including police reform, juvenile crime and drugs. “I can’t be everywhere but I can deputize my assistant state attorneys to go out in the community and bring back what are the concerns, what am I missing,” Worrell said.wftv.com
Former Orlando police officer charged with felony sexual assault stemming from traffic stop
ORLANDO, Fla. — A YouTube video sparked a criminal investigation against a former Officer of the Year at the Orlando Police Department. State attorney Monique Worrell just charged Jonathan Mills with felony sexual battery and battery stemming from a 2014 traffic stop, and now there’s a warrant for his arrest. READ: Former Orlando police officer goes to court over disability pension disputeOrlando officers on patrol were looking for a suspect when Mills rolled up on the scene. The following year, Mills, who had a history of complaints in his six years with the department, was named Officer of the Year. It’s unclear if this arrest and pending new charge of sexual battery could impact the proceedings.wftv.com
State attorney will not file charges after man dies after Ocoee police used Tasers
State attorney will not file charges after man dies after Ocoee police used TasersOCOEE, Fla. — State Attorney Monique Worrell confirmed Thursday that the officers who used a Taser on an Ocoee man who later died will not face criminal charges. Jean Celestin died after Ocoee police arrived at his mother’s home for a domestic disturbance in April 2019. They said they knew it was a symptom of someone suffering from schizophrenia and bipolar affective disorder who was off his medication. Rather, they exercised the degree of force they believed necessary to detain Celestin, according to the correspondence. Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, and click here to watch the latest news on your Smart TV.wftv.com
State attorney Worrell announces new traffic homicide unit to handle backlog of cases
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Orange-Osceola state attorney Monique Worrell announced the creation of a special unit to deal with the growing number of traffic homicide cases. Worrell says because traffic homicide cases are difficult to prosecute, she hopes using just one prosecutor dedicated to just those cases will streamline communication between law enforcement, victims and prosecutors, ultimately bringing justice. The new unit will handle cases in Orange and Osceola counties from the crash scene to court. Several police chiefs say the unit will lead to a better working relationship and help with the prosecution of cases. READ: Florida woman driving stolen car fatally shot by police after confrontationThe new unit has already cleared its backlog from 2019 and is currently working on clearing the backlog of cases from 2020.wftv.com
State attorney: Osceola County SRO seen on video slamming student to the ground won’t face charges
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. — The State Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday that the school resource officer caught on video earlier this year slamming a Liberty High School student to the ground will not face criminal charges. State Attorney Monique Worrell said that the use of force used by Osceola County Deputy Ethan Fournier did not violate any Florida laws. Video of the incident, which went viral online in January, showed a confrontation between Liberty High School student Taylor Bracey and Fournier. READ: Video shows new perspective of takedown of Liberty High student by school resource officerIn the video, Fournier is seen throwing the teen to the ground. Watch: Mother of teen body-slammed by school officer says her daughter still has headaches, memory losswftv.com
State Attorney revisits process to decide if law enforcement members make reliable witnesses
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — More than a year ago, the office of then-State Attorney Aramis Ayala released its list of police officers and deputies whose history might make them questionable witnesses in crimes. Now, State Attorney Monique Worrell has redeveloped that process, this time with full support from many law enforcement agencies. Worrell went back to the drawing board after hearing strong concerns from law enforcement about its fairness to officers. READ: 2 injured in shooting outside Paddock Mall in Ocala, police saySo far, all agencies in Osceola County have signed on to the redeveloped policy. But agencies are legally required to sign on, and at least seven in Orange County haven’t agreed; neither have the FBI, FDLE or FHP.wftv.com
FDLE turned over Osceola SRO body-slamming case to state attorney’s office
The probe into an Osceola County school resource deputy who was caught on video slamming a Liberty High School student onto concrete was turned over to the State Attorney’s Office, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said.
Orange-Osceola state attorney creates new policy for officer-involved shooting review
Prosecutors with the State Attorney’s Office in the Ninth Judicial Circuit, covering Orange and Osceola counties, will independently investigate police officer or deputy-involved shootings in addition to the review conducted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Child dies after caretaker leaves him alone in car, so why won’t prosecutors charge the woman with his death?
Deputies charged the caretaker with aggravated manslaughter, but News 6 isn’t naming the caretaker, because shortly after her arrest, charges were dropped. What [other] evidence do you need?”In court filings, prosecutors under then-State Attorney Aramis Ayala argued the caretaker was distracted. Ad“Listening to music and talking on the phone”, but they believed leaving Jace in the car was not intentional. “We have to be consistent when it comes to situations like this or you are going to have kids constantly left inside a vehicle,” Wallace said. AdNews 6 reviewed the statute for leaving a child unattended in a car.
State attorney changes incarceration policy due to Orange County jail’s COVID-19 outbreak
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange Osceola State Attorney Monique Worrell is changing her office’s policy on seeking incarceration for defendants in response to the COVID-19 outbreak at the Orange County jail. The policy comes after an outbreak of virus cases at the Orange County Jail where 83 inmates contracted the virus, according to Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings. The statement echos Dr. Raul Pino from the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, who referred to jails as a “petri dish” during a news conference last week. Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said the jail has about 2,600 inmates housed there. Ad“What we don’t want is people sitting in custody pre trial, because they cant afford to get out of jail,” Worrell said.
New State Attorney files charges in high-profile cases
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The new state attorney for Florida’s Ninth Judicial Circuit is getting to work by filing charges in several high-profile cases. New court filings show charges filed in two, unrelated cases involving an Orlando rapper and a former UCF football player. Unrelated to that case, Worrell has also filed a felony charge of carrying a concealed firearm without a permit against 22-year-old Antwan Collier. Collier was a defensive back for the UCF football team at the time of his arrest. In the days following the incident, UCF athletics announced Collier and three other athletes involved in the incident had been let go from the team.
Outgoing state attorney drops death penalty in 3 high profile cases
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Monique Worrell was sworn in as the new state attorney for Orange County and Osceola County. Monday night, the outgoing state attorney, Aramis Ayala, decided to drop the death penalty against four defendants in three high profile cases. It was one of the last moves Ayala made while still in office--filing notices that her office would not seek the death penalty against four defendants in three high profile cases, after initially seeking death. “I don’t want my term to be defined by what we do or don’t do with regard to the death penalty,” Worrell said. “That is a very small percentage of what a state attorney does,” she said.
Suspect accused of murdering Osceola couple won’t face death penalty
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – The Orange-Osceola State Attorney’s Office won’t seek the death penalty against the man accused of murdering a married couple in Kissimmee more than two years ago, according to court records. Ayala was initially seeking the death penalty in all three cases. Ayala previously announced she would not seek the death penalty in any case. When she first announced plans to not seek the death penalty in 2019, then-Gov. This was Aramis’ first week, beginning her term with a discussion about death penalty.
Monique Worrell begins work as state attorney-elect
Monique Worrell, who is Florida’s second Black state attorney, is preparing to take office in Orange and Osceola counties after winning the general election. [TRENDING: How to get vaccine in Florida | Will vaccine work on new strains? “I am the state attorney elect,” Worrell said. She’s actually already working in the 9th circuit State Attorney’s Office assisting in the Conviction Integrity Unit which she helped start. “I will have the benefit of a lot of advice for her on things that work well and things that don’t work well,” Worrell said.
Incoming Orange-Osceola state attorney fires 5 employees before entering office
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Incoming Orange-Osceola State Attorney Monique Worrell has notified five employees that they will not be retained when she takes office in January. Three assistant state attorneys and two investigators were notified by letter this week that they will be let go. I am excited to inherit a staff that is so committed to these goals,” Worrell wrote. We appreciate their service to this office, and wish them well in their future endeavors.”The local state attorney’s office has about 400 employees. Interviews will take place to replace the five employees who will be dismissed effective Jan. 5.
Monique Worrell to replace Aramis Ayala as Orange-Osceola state attorney
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Democrat Monique Worrell has been declared the winner of the Orange-Osceola state attorney race. As of 11 p.m. Tuesday, she had 66% of the vote with 342 out of 348 precincts reporting. [LIVE RACE RESULTS: Scroll to bottom of story to see all race returns]RACE DETAILS BELOWAfter a heavily contested primary, voters had the choice of two candidates to replace Aramis Ayala as the state attorney for Orange and Osceola counties. He’s been endorsed by former Orange County sheriffs Kevin Beary and Lawson Lamar. Monique Worrell (D)Monique Worrell has earned endorsements from Ayala, Sen. Bernie Sanders and singer John Legend.
Election 2020: Monique Worrell wins Orange-Osceola State Attorney in a landslide
click to enlarge Photo courtesy Monique Worrell campaignMonique Worrell has won office as the State Attorney of the 9th Judicial Circuit (Orange and Osceola counties).This race was essentially decided in the Aug. 18 primary, when Worrell defeated fellow Democrats Deborah Barra, Ryan Williams and Belvin Perry Jr. In this race against Jose Torroella, she received 67 percent of the vote.Worrell is chief legal officer at Reform Alliance, and former director of the Conviction Integrity Unit at the state attorney's office under Aramis Ayala.In an interview withearlier this year, Worrell said, "As the next State Attorney, I will begin prosecuting police officers at the first instances of misconduct, such as assault, battery, planting evidence, or falsifying statements. "She also told us that she plans to eliminate incarceration for minor drug crimes, such as possession of marijuana, adding, "I believe that it is time to end the 'war on drugs' narrative and begin looking to alternate sentencing to address addiction head-on."orlandoweekly.com
Meet the candidates: Here’s who’s running for Orange-Osceola state attorney
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – After a heavily contested primary, voters now have the choice of two candidates to replace Aramis Ayala as the state attorney for Orange and Osceola counties. Before the November election, get to know more about the two candidates vying for the position of top prosecutor. Here’s what you need to know:Jose Torroella (NPA)Jose Torreolla says he wants to bring truth and fairness to the office if he’s elected. He’s been endorsed by former Orange County sheriffs Kevin Beary and Lawson Lamar. Click here or visit ClickOrlando.com/results2020 to learn more about what you can expect to see on your ballot.
General Election Results for Central Florida State Attorneys on Nov. 3, 2020
Find All Race Results HereORLANDO, Fla. – On Nov. 3, voters in Flagler and Volusia and Orange and Osceola counties will decide their next state attorneys. In Orange County, with Aramis Ayala not running for re-election, either Jose Torreolla or Monique Worrell will become the next Orange-Osceola state attorney. In the 7th Judicial Circuit race, Republican incumbent R.J. Larizza is running against independent candidate Don Dempsey to keep his role as Flagler-Volusia State Attorney. Check all the races in Central Florida and statewide in the dropdown menu below, and get more information on the ClickOrlando.com Results 2020 page.
Florida General Election Results for Orange County on Nov. 3, 2020
Find All Race Results HereORLANDO, Fla. – Some of the key races in Orange County include sheriff and state attorney. Orange County Sheriff John Mina looks to hold off Tim Lucas Adams and Winston Johnson. Meanwhile, with Aramis Ayala not running for re-election, either Jose Torreolla and Monique Worrell will become the next Orange-Osceola state attorney. Check out all the Orange County races, including how residents voted for president, in the list below. Check all the races in Central Florida and statewide in the dropdown menu below, and get more information on the ClickOrlando.com Results 2020 page.
Orlando Weekly Voting Guide 2020: Orange-Osceola State Attorney, 9th Judicial Circuit
click to enlarge Photo courtesy Monique Worrell campaignThis race was essentially decided in the Aug. 18 primary, when Monique Worrell defeated fellow Democrats Deborah Barra, Ryan Williams and Belvin Perry Jr.Worrell ( Democrat, Winter Garden ) is chief legal officer at Reform Alliance, and former director of the Conviction Integrity Unit at the state attorney's office. Her campaign promises to end the incarceration of people "who are not a threat to the physical safety of others," reduce mass incarceration and end excessive sentencing. She also wants to reform the cash bail system. "Her challenger on the ballot, Jose Torroella ( No Party Affiliation, Orlando ) is a lawyer and self-described “law and order” conservative. He is endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police and the Florida State Lodge.orlandoweekly.com
Orange-Osceola State Attorney candidate Monique Worrell wants to change the culture of prosecution
Monique Worrell beat out three democratic candidates to win the Aug. 18 primary election for state attorney in what was considered a crowded field with 42% of the vote. Asked if that handed her the primary election win, she said the momentum began well before those commercials aired. “I was sworn in as an Assistant State Attorney. I carried a badge in the same way that all other Assistant State Attorney’s did.”AdWorrell also had the endorsement of the current 9th Judicial Circuit State Attorney Aramis Ayala. After the primary election Ayala eliminated the position of Chief Assistant State Attorney which Barra held.
Meet the candidates: Heres whos running for Orange-Osceola state attorney
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. No matter the results of the election, residents in Orange and Osceola counties are guaranteed to have a new state attorney serving them starting next year. Four Democrats have qualified to run for the race and fill the role that will be vacated by current Orange-Osceola State Attorney Aramis Ayala. Barra also sits on Ayalas death penalty review panel, a group of prosecutors who decide whether the death penalty is appropriate in a first-degree murder case. (WKMG)Ryan Williams, a longtime assistant state attorney in Floridas Ninth and Fifth Judicial Circuits, resigned from Ayalas office after she announced in March 2017 that her prosecutors wouldnt seek the death penalty in any case. Williams was one of the earliest candidates in the race, announcing his intent to run in March 2019.
Former chief judge talks run for Orange-Osceola state attorney
The race for Orange-Osceola state attorney is heating up as the four Democratic candidates get set to square off in the upcoming primary election. The current Orlando-area state attorney Aramis Ayala is not seeking re-election after her surprising victory over Jeff Ashton in 2016. Monique Worrell, a criminal justice attorney; current state attorney in Orange-Osceola Deborah Barra; Ryan Williams, a longtime assistant state attorney in Floridas 9th and 5th Judicial Circuits and former chief judge Belvin Perry have all announced they are running for the position. RELATED: Orange-Osceola chief assistant state attorney running for Aramis Ayalas job"Before I even retired people had approached me in the past about running for state attorney and at the time I chose not to," Perry said. MORE: Who is the Orange-Osceola County State Attorney candidate Ryan Williams?
Singer John Legend endorses Orange-Osceola State Attorney candidate Monique Worrell
ORLANDO, Fla. – Grammy-Award winning singer and songwriter John Legend is paying attention to Florida politics, specifically several upcoming elections for local state attorney seats. The current Orlando-area state attorney Aramis Ayala said last year she would not be seeking re-election. Worrell, former chief judge of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Belvin Perry; current assistant state attorney in Orange-Osceola Deborah Barra and Ryan Williams, a longtime assistant state attorney in Florida’s 9th and 5th Judicial Circuits, have all announced they are running. Worrell, a criminal justice attorney, faces the three other candidates in the Aug. 18 Democratic primary. The goal of the political group is to “elect prosecutors who will fix our broken criminal justice system,” according to its website.
Thousands gather in downtown Orlando in response to George Floyds death
ORLANDO, Fla. More than 2,000 people joined a large demonstration Tuesday in Orlando calling for change after the death of a black man killed by a Minneapolis police officer. Protesters filled the streets of downtown near City Hall before the gathering headed toward Orange Blossom Trail. For more than an hour, protesters voiced their demands while Orlando police looked on surrounding City Hall with a bicycle barricade. 3:30 p.m. UPDATE: Crowd outside Orlando City Hall for protest. Orlando police closed down South Street at Orange Avenue and then State Road 408 as thousands of people carrying signs walked on.