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JACKSONVILLE
The Fear Is Real!

 
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Jacksonville, Florida: In The Crosshairs

The City of Jacksonville set back-to-back homicide records in 2019 (162 Homicides) and 2020 (176 Homicides), and was ranked 10th nationwide in pedestrian deaths, according to FBI.gov and Smart
GrowthAmerica.org statistical data.
 

2019 Homicides
Record

2020 Homicides
Record Breaking

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TextAloud: IVONA Joey22 (Created: 7/25/2021 11:49:37 PM)
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To My Fellow Citizens,


I want to send a heartfelt thank you to the 10,243 Duval County residents who cast their vote for my campaign in the 2015 Unitary Primary Election for sheriff, and the 56,780 who cast their vote in the 2019 sheriff's race, making that contest one of the strongest showings in decades for a challenger against an incumbent sheriff in a Duval County election. And although we came up short of attaining our goal, the message sent by 56, 780 voters calling for top-down reform inside the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO), did not go unnoticed by the local political establishment. 


Since the 2019 election, I have been approached by known democrats and republicans who praised our campaign team’s performance, and acknowledged that it has sparked serious behind the scene conversations about the prospects of improved police and community relationships in Jacksonville. The comments were both humbling and gratifying at the same time. But make no mistake about it. Their enthusiasm about the future of JSO and community relationships is because of you—The Voter.


That said, I am proud to announce that I have filed formal paperwork with the Duval County Supervisor of Elections Office to officially enter the 2023 sheriff’s race. My decision to run in this Open Seat election was fueled by the hundreds of you who have stopped me on the streets to share your personal stories about having to live your lives in constant fear of becoming the next victim of the random gun violence that has essentially traumatized our city. No matter where I go in the county (e.g., gas station, grocery store, barber shop), I run into someone who has been directly impacted by the out-of-control violence. 


The fear is real.


In the 2015 televised sheriff’s debate held on the campus of Jacksonville University (JU), I called for sensible police reform measures to be adopted inside the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office to help reduce violent crime and bridge the gap of trust between the police and citizens living in high crime areas. Those reforms included: Civilian Review Boards, Public Accountability Office, Expansion of the JSO Community Affairs Division (to promote positive community outreach), Increased Minority Hiring, Greater Stewardship of JSO’s Ballooning Budget, Increased Use of Civil Citations (to give our youth a second chance), and Changes to JSO Leadership and Management to Help Reduce Officer Misconduct Litigation That Is Costing Duval County Taxpayer’s Millions.

Ever Wonder, What If?

Who Says There Are No Do-Overs In Life?

File Photo: 2015 Jacksonville Sheriff's Debate on the Campus of Jacksonville University

I often think about what our city’s violent crime problem would look like today had our current local officeholders moved aggressively in 2015 to implement the police reforms uttered on that debate stage. Could many of the lives lost in our city to random gun violence in the past 6-years have been saved? Would our city still be considered The Murder Capital of Florida? Would back-to-back homicide records have been set in Jacksonville in 2019 and 2020? Would our city be listed 10th nationwide in pedestrian deaths? Would the deep divide of trust between the police and the citizens living in crime infested neighborhoods still exist today? Would our taxpayers be paying nearly $500 million for police services, only to be labeled #1 in the state in homicides year-after-year? Would civil misconduct lawsuits filed against JSO officers because of disciplinary issues continue to drain taxpayers out of millions of dollars? And finally, could our city have served as a model for police reform to the rest of the nation in the aftermath of the tragic murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin? 


These questions remind me of an old saying that my mother used to tell me when I was a young boy. She said, “Son, life is about the sum of the choices that you make.” Those words of wisdom have had a profound impact on the decisions that I make to this day. While we cannot turn back the calendar to 2015 or 2019, we can make a commitment to one another—as one community—to choose wisely going forward.


On March 21st 2023, join the 56,780 Duval County voters who, with their vote, are demanding real change in our city.  Jacksonville, we know what needs to be done. Now, let’s just do it.


Thank you for the love and support that you have shown our campaign over the years. Your continued support is critical to our success. Please consider making a small donation to our campaign to help with voter outreach efforts.

                                                           Respectfully

                                                           Dr. Tony Cummings
                                                           Candidate For Sheriff 2023

 
 
 

    Dr. Tony Cummings

 

               It's Time For A Change!

Message To Citizens

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