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Florida lawmaker says she's being threatened for looking into handling of Epstein

'I've received countless phone calls'

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Child Mind Institute

Florida state Sen. Lauren Book (D) contacted police after she was threatened for pushing for an investigation into the handling of sex offender and accused trafficker Jeffrey Epstein when he was incarcerated in Palm Beach in 2008 and 2009, according to the Miami Herald.

Book reached out to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) asking him to authorize an investigation to how and why Epstein was able to spend much of his jail sentence in an office on an unusual work-release agreement, and she said she's gotten some serious pushback from an anonymous source and from political supporters of the Palm Beach sheriff.

"I've received countless phone calls saying 'Little girl you don't know what you're getting into,' and telling me that I should just stop,'' Book told the Herald.

Book is calling for an investigation specifically into Palm Beach Sheriff Rick Bradshaw, who was also the sheriff when Epstein was jailed for 13 months as a result of a plea deal regarding federal child sex charges.

The story gets a little stranger, however. Book has also asked police to look into a claim on a Russian website run by a former Palm Beach sheriff's deputy that Bradshaw has been trying to access her phone and emails under the pretext of "imminent danger."

The former deputy is John Dugan, who runs the website PBSOtalk.org. Dugan fled to Moscow in 2016 after an FBI raid on his home. The site claims to be focused on exposing corruption in the sheriff's office.

Epstein was allowed a work-release arrangement that permitted him to leave jail for up to 12 hours per day, six days per week, meaning not only was his sentence notably lenient due to his plea deal, he was barely serving the sentence at all.

DeSantis said he is aware of Book's request and is considering how and whether to move forward.

"I saw someone sent me a letter," DeSantis said Thursday. "I looked at it. I've got to figure out what the proper role of FDLE is. I know they are investigating it down in Palm Beach. ... Clearly when you look at how that happened, if even like 10 percent of the things about him are true, then that whole agreement was obviously suspect and willfully below what he should have faced."

(H/T Hot Air)

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