Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office Announces Action Steps Toward Racial Justice

TAMPA, FL- Today, Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren is announcing a series of Action Steps developed in collaboration with grass-roots organizations and leaders from the Black community, including the Hillsborough County Branch of the NAACP, to address racial injustice, increase transparency, and pursue greater equality in our criminal justice system.

“We’ve been listening to the voices in our community calling out for change, and we’ve been meeting with people from every part of Hillsborough County to shape our next steps. We’re taking action on several of these ideas, and there will be more to come in the future,” State Attorney Warren said.

“I remain committed to shaping a 21st Century prosecutor’s office—one that tackles racial disparities, engages with the community, and builds trust through transparency. We’ve done a lot in the past three-and-a-half years to move in the right direction, with smart reforms that make our community more safe and our justice system more fair, but we know we have more to accomplish.”

The Action Steps for Fairness & Engagement announced Thursday include:

Racial Justice Work Group

Creating a focused working group with representatives from the community and State Attorney’s Office to identify important community issues related to racial injustice and develop consistent responses to address them.

Use of Deadly Force Review

Expanding outreach efforts to reach more groups and provide more clarity each time the State Attorney’s Office reviews whether criminal charges are appropriate in a case involving the use of deadly force by police or civilians.

Community Engagement

Growing community connections by encouraging staff engagement and considering community involvement in staff evaluations and promotions. State Attorney Warren will continue monthly and quarterly meetings with community groups, including the Hillsborough Branch of the NAACP, faith leaders, and the public at large.

Minority Prosecutor Recruitment

Taking additional steps to recruit a staff that reflects our community by formalizing our ongoing support of the National Black Prosecutors Association and establishing partnerships with law schools at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Better Sentencing Analysis

Investing in tools and research to evaluate sentences and plea arrangements, aiming to ensure that people with similar crimes and similar criminal histories are not receiving vastly different consequences.

“I see an effort by our State Attorney, Andrew Warren, to bring equal justice to our Black community. These reforms will hopefully bring more transparency and allow input from our community,” NAACP Hillsborough County Branch President Yvette Lewis said.

“These steps show a real commitment by State Attorney Warren to continue reforming the justice system to make it work better for everyone. When we bring people to the table, speak honestly and openly, and then roll up our sleeves and get to work—we can accomplish powerful change,” Organize Florida Regional Director Robin Lockett said.

Members of the public can suggest potential topics for the Racial Justice Work Group to address on the State Attorney’s Office website at sao13th.com.

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