Plan Dropped to Rename Hillsborough Courthouse Auditorium After Suspended State Attorney Andrew Warren

November 16, 2022 Updated 1:01 PM ET

Suspended Florida State Attorney Andrew Warren.
Suspended Florida State Attorney Andrew Warren.

TAMPA (FLV) – The Hillsborough County Commission will reportedly no longer be considering renaming portions of the downtown courthouse after Andrew Warren was suspended by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Hillsborough Commissioner Mariella Smith intended to rename the auditorium in the Pat Frank Courthouse on Pierce Street after Warren, but has since withdrawn the plan.

The withdrawal came after Smith and Democratic Commissioner Kimberly Overman lost in the Nov. 8 election. The County Commission will be controlled by a majority of Republicans for the next two years.

“It’s just not the right time to proceed,” Smith said. “Our community’s going through enormous issues just as we’re going through a major transition to a whole new board (majority) with a dramatically different vision for the county. I don’t want to be burdening the new board and the staff with things like this when they’re going to be grappling with much larger issues.”

Warren said he is “honored” that the Commission would consider the recognition, but his focus is elsewhere.

When Smith originally proposed to rename the auditorium after Warren during a Nov. 9 commission meeting, she said Warren is “fighting a courageous battle for democracy in this county. He’s fighting to ensure that our votes count in this county.”

DeSantis suspended Warren from his state attorney position of the 13th Judicial Circuit in August and claimed he failed to prosecute certain crimes and vowed not to enforce certain abortion restrictions or potential laws related to sex change operations.

“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,” DeSantis explained.

The governor appointed Susan Lopez to serve as State Attorney for that area in place of Warren.

“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,” DeSantis continued.

Warren responded by calling the move a “political stunt.” He filed suit in federal court denying the allegations. The trial is scheduled to begin Nov. 29.

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