This afternoon, Andrew Warren will announce a major development in connection with a cold case murder investigation that was launched by the Hillsborough State Attorney Office’s Conviction Review Unit, according to a press release.
Today, Governor Ron DeSantis suspended State Attorney Andrew Warren of the 13th Judicial Circuit due to neglect of duty.
The Governor has the authority to suspend a state officer under Article IV, Section 7 of the Constitution of the State of Florida.
The Governor has appointed Susan Lopez to serve as State Attorney for the period of suspension. She has most recently been serving as a Judge on the Hillsborough County Court.
In the news: Andrew Warren Swipes Back At Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Calling Suspension “Political Stunt”
“State Attorneys have a duty to prosecute crimes as defined in Florida law, not to pick and choose which laws to enforce based on his personal agenda,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “It is my duty to hold Florida’s elected officials to the highest standards for the people of Florida. I have the utmost trust that Judge Susan Lopez will lead the office through this transition and faithfully uphold the rule of law.”
Warren responded Thursday calling the suspension a political stunt.
“Today’s political stunt is an illegal overreach that continues a dangerous pattern by Ron DeSantis of using his office to further his own political ambition. It spits in the face of the voters of Hillsborough County who have twice elected me to serve them, not Ron DeSantis,” Warren said.
According to the release, the cold case Warren is scheduled to speak about, is connected to the exoneration of Robert DuBoise in 2020 and the vicious rape and murder of 19-year-old Barbara Grams, whose body was found in Tampa on August 18, 1983.
The Conviction Review Unit’s investigation in 2020 found DNA evidence that established DuBoise did not kill Grams. However, that DNA sample did provide new leads and launched a fresh investigation. In the two years since the exoneration, the CRU and law enforcement partners have continued to investigate the crimes against Barbara Grams, leading to today’s announcement.
Andrew Warren will provide a complete overview on the groundbreaking process leading to this major development and will be available to answer questions following the announcement, the release says.