Data scientist Rebekah Jones says she’s turning herself in after police issue arrest warrant

Southeast

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) — Rebekah Jones, the former COVID-19 data scientist for the state of Florida, says she’s turning herself in to police Sunday after a warrant was issued for her arrest.

Jones announced on Twitter Saturday that the warrant didn’t come from evidence the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) sought during the search of her home in early December.

“The warrant was based on a lie. We argued this in court just last week. This should be victory,” she tweeted. “However, police did find documents I received/downloaded from sources in the state, or something of that nature…”

She said it isn’t clear at this point “what exactly they’re saying I had that I shouldn’t have had, but an agent confirmed it has nothing to do with the subject of the warrant.”

Jones was fired in May for unauthorized public comments about Florida’s coronavirus numbers.

According to the FDLE, agents served the warrant after the Florida Department of Health filed a complaint regarding an “unauthorized message” sent from the department’s emergency alert system. An FDLE spokesperson said agents determined Jones’ home was the location the message was sent from – but Jones told NewsNation affiliate WFLA she didn’t even know a message had been sent.

A couple weeks later, Jones filed a lawsuit against FDLE for what she said was a “raid” on her home.

“The raid was based on a lie,” Jones’ tweets continued Saturday. “Still, the state has issued a warrant for my arrest — even though the ‘crime’ is not related to the warrant, the scope of the warrant, and they didn’t wait for a third party to review confidential information on my computers.”

Jones said that she’s turning herself in to police Sunday night “to protect my family from continued police violence, and to show that I’m ready to fight whatever they throw at me.”

“Saying goodbye to my family just now is the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” she concluded.

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