Article Courtesy of The
By Associated Press
Published July 25, 2020
WINTER PARK — A county commissioner in Florida was
arrested on Monday for impersonating a sheriff’s deputy, the Florida
Department of Law Enforcement said.
Commissioner Fred Hawkins Jr., 53, was arrested Monday
evening for impersonating a member of the Osceola County
Sheriff’s Office, according to a spokeswoman for the Florida
Department of Law Enforcement.
Hawkins tried to enter an election of the Turnberry Reserve
Homeowners Association in Winter Park on Nov. 7 even though
he didn’t belong to the association, FDLE spokeswoman Gretl
Plessinger told the Orlando Sentinel.
A security guard attempted to stop Hawkins, who showed a
sheriff’s office credential and claimed he was with the
agency. He then threatened to arrest the security guard,
Hawkins holds the honorary title of special deputy with the
Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, but is not a certified law
enforcement officer and has no arrest powers, Plessinger
She said the agency issued a warrant for Hawkins’ arrest on
Monday, and he turned himself in at the Osceola County Jail
in the evening after attending a County Commissioners
Commissioner Fred Hawkins jr. participates in the Silver Spurs Rodeo
Paradedowntown St. Cloud, Febr. 21, 2020
Hawkins was booked into jail and posted a $1,000 bond shortly afterward,
according to jail records.
Hawkins is currently serving his third term on the Osceola county
commission, and is running to represent District 42 in the Florida House of
His campaign said in a statement released Monday night that Hawkins “was
merely trying to gain access inside a meeting room” where an association
meeting was getting heated and people were getting unruly.
“Hawkins was attempting to reach a deputy in hopes of deescalating the
situation when he was blocked by a private security guard. ... Commissioner
Hawkins has routinely cooperated with investigators in an open and honest
fashion and will continue to do so,” spokeswoman Christina Johnson said in