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Andrew Warren says he will appeal his suspension as Hillsborough state attorney

Andrew Warren speaks at podium
Sky Lebron
WUSF Public Media
Andrew Warren, speaking after a judge upheld his suspension in January, said he will appeal the ruling.

Gov. Ron DeSantis suspended Warren in August. A district court judge ruled DeSantis violated Warren's First Amendment rights, but did not have the authority to reinstate him.

Andrew Warren said Tuesday he will appeal a judge's decision that upheld his suspension as Hillsborough state attorney by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

In a news release, Warren said DeSantis "broke the law."

"The idea that the governor can get away with breaking federal and state law should offend anyone who believes in freedom — free speech, free elections, and that no one is above the law,” Warren said. “We’ve proven that DeSantis broke the law, and I’ll keep fighting until I’m back doing the work that the people elected me to do.”

Warren filed a lawsuit after DeSantis suspended him in August, citing statements Warren made that he would not enforce any current or potential state laws regarding abortion or transgender health care.

Last month, District Court Judge Robert Hinkle said DeSantis was wrong when he claimed that Warren had blanket policies not to prosecute certain cases when he suspended him.

He said DeSantis violated Warren's First Amendment rights, as well as the Florida Constitution, by suspending him for political reasons.

But, according to the U.S. Constitution, Hinkle said his court could not reinstate Warren.

Following the ruling, Warren wrote a letter to DeSantis requesting that he be reinstated, which was denied.

"Mr. Warren signed a statement refusing to prosecute the laws of the land," a statement from DeSantis' deputy press secretary, Jeremy Redfern, read in part. "Thus, the governor removed Mr. Warren for neglect of duty and incompetence. Public prosecutors cannot pick and choose which laws to enforce."

The case now heads to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta.

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