Attorney General Ashley Moody News Release
|September 22, 2020
Contact: Kylie Mason
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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VIDEO: Attorney General Moody Sponsors Resolution Dedicating September to Fallen Florida Law Enforcement Heroes
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody today presented a resolution recognizing September as Florida Law Enforcement Service and Sacrifice Month. The month is dedicated to remembering and honoring fallen officers and recognizing and supporting the service and sacrifice of those who serve to protect. The resolution was signed by Governor Ron DeSantis and members of the Florida Cabinet and presented to representatives of the Florida Sheriffs Association and Florida Police Chiefs Association at today’s Cabinet meeting.
Attorney General Moody said, “As the wife of a law enforcement officer, I see clearly the daunting challenges currently surrounding the men and women who wear the badge. Florida law enforcement officers are among the bravest and most selfless men and women I have ever known. Now, more than ever, they deserve our support and recognition. Even as their health and safety became increasingly at risk, these officers, without hesitation, rushed to answer the call of duty—putting on their badge, uniform and a mask to serve others.
“I’m proud to sponsor this resolution and join Florida police chiefs and sheriffs in recognizing September as a time to honor our fallen heroes. As we honor and remember these fallen officers, let us not forget the immense sacrifices they made—laying down their lives for the citizens they swore an oath to protect. Most importantly, let’s remember to always thank law enforcement officers for their selfless service.”
The resolution follows a joint proclamation by the FSA and FPCA designating September 2020 as a time to honor law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.
Florida Sheriff Association President and Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Shultz said, “Our fallen deputies epitomize the very best of us as they have served dutifully and given the ultimate sacrifice. While we honor and remember them daily, the world together honors them in September as we mourn each lost hero. With our law enforcement partners across the state, the Sheriffs of Florida solemnly salute each and every law enforcement officer killed in the line of duty.”
Florida Police Chiefs Association President and Chief of Satellite Beach Police Department Jeff Pearson, said, "The Florida Police Chiefs Association applauds Attorney General Ashley Moody for her unwavering support, and her commitment to honoring Florida’s fallen law enforcement officers by publicly acknowledging their sacrifices. Now, that sacrifice includes exposing themselves to COVID-19 while in-the-line of duty, and the possibility of exposing their family members when they return home. We join with General Moody and call on all Floridians to honor the service of officers who continue to serve despite the risks to their health and the health of their families, and to remember the sacrifice of fallen law enforcement officers in the state of Florida."
Line-of-duty deaths nationwide in 2020 have already far outpaced those of 2019, with the total number over 200 lives lost so far this year compared to 147 in all of 2019. Law enforcement officers are facing threats from COVID-19, as well as an approximate 17% rise in officers being feloniously killed.
To read the resolution, click here.
Last month, Attorney General Moody issued a statement urging the support of law enforcement officers upholding the pledge to serve and protect amid the harrowing statistics. The statement called for unity and creating a safer environment for law enforcement.
In May, Attorney General Moody led a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general in sending a letter to Congress supporting the Safeguarding America’s First Responders Act. The SAFR Act permits the families of first responders, who die or are permanently and totally disabled as a result of COVID-19, to receive the same federal benefits extended to those otherwise killed or injured in the line of duty. The SAFR Act was later signed into law by President Trump, granting those benefits.
In August, Attorney General Ashley Moody urged Congress to provide for federal penalties against individuals who deliberately target local, state, federal or tribal law enforcement officers with violence. Attorney General Moody sent a letter to congressional leaders to take up and pass the Protect and Serve Act of 2019. The Act provides for a federal prison term of up to 10 years for anyone who knowingly assaults a law enforcement officer, causing serious bodily injury under circumstances where the crime affects interstate or foreign commerce.
Today’s resolution is one of the countless efforts Attorney General Moody has made in supporting law enforcement and recognizing officer’s profound impacts on local communities. Soon after taking office, Attorney General Moody created a statewide Back the Blue campaign to highlight citizens, law enforcement officers and organizations taking astounding measures to promote positive relationships between law enforcement and the communities they serve.