Stalking Case Against Fired Florida Health Data Scientist To Drag Into August
A misdemeanor criminal stalking case against the self-described whistleblower at the center of a politically charged dispute over Florida’s COVID-19 disclosures will continue into August, a circuit judge in Tallahassee ruled Wednesday.
Rebekah Jones, 30, was charged in July 2019 with stalking a former boyfriend – long before the pandemic that catapulted her into headlines and television interviews.
In a teleconference early Wednesday, the judge agreed to a defense motion to set the next hearing in the case for Aug. 26. Jones’ lawyer, Robert Morris of Tallahassee, told the judge in June he was close to an agreement with prosecutors, but it was unclear whether that would result in a guilty plea or charges being dismissed. The assistant state attorney, McLane Edwards, did not return phone messages over two days.
Police said she published an explicit 68-page document online discussing private details of the 2017 relationship. At the time, Jones was the man's professor at Florida State University and married.
Jones was fired as the Florida Department of Health’s geographic information systems manager in May after publicly accusing state officials of asking her to wrongly manipulate COVID-19 data, which the government disputed.
This story was produced by Fresh Take Florida, a news service of the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications.