State appeal court orders prosecutor to pursue discipline against Florida's 'Grim Reaper' in 'very unusual' move

click image Screen capture courtesy YouTube user Austin KellermanDays after asking the Florida Bar to consider sanctioning an attorney who made national headlines by dressing as the Grim Reaper to criticize Gov. Ron DeSantis’ response to the coronavirus pandemic, an appeals court took the rare step of ordering a state prosecutor to pursue discipline against Santa Rosa Beach lawyer Daniel Uhlfelder.A three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal on Friday asked the Bar to consider imposing sanctions against Uhlfelder because of an appeal he filed in a lawsuit that sought to force DeSantis to close the state’s beaches during the pandemic. I can’t say it’s never happened, but it’s almost unprecedented,” Tallahassee lawyer Richard Greenberg, who represents Uhlfelder on the disciplinary issue, told the News Service of Florida on Thursday.Uhlfelder, who has traveled throughout the state in a macabre costume of the Grim Reaper to criticize DeSantis, filed the lawsuit in March to try to force the governor to close beaches to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The story, as published by the, also included comments that Uhlfelder made Friday during a brief interview with the USA TODAY NETWORK-Florida Capital Bureau, which is affiliated with the“I do find it interesting that this opinion attacking my critiques of Gov. “There are 599 circuit judges in Florida at last count, and I don’t think we need to have 599 governors-in-waiting.”But the judge also encouraged Uhlfelder, who was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1998, to pursue an appeal in the case, “because I do think this is a matter of importance.”“If the 1st District (Court of Appeal) tells me that I’m wrong and I do have the authority, then I’m glad to address it and go from there.