BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — We make a habit out of not republishing what other media is doing or reporting. BocaNewsNow.com is independent. But giving credit where credit is due, the Post’s editorial today calling Sheriff Ric Bradshaw’s removal of the booking blotter “apparent retaliation” and “uncalled for” is right on.
BocaNewsNow.com is a hobby that has grown to 150,000 readers a month. It may be a very small operation — and by no means a full time job — but our roots are in national network and local broadcast news. We know the way things are supposed to work, and are constantly amazed that the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office spends more time looking for ways not to deliver information than make it easier for citizens to access.
We have asked — repeatedly — for access to the non-confidential records of what the deputies do in Boca Raton’s “District 7.” They risk their lives every day. We’d love to report on the good they do. This is information routinely provided by Boca, Delray and Boynton Beach police departments. But PBSO refuses to provide the information — even though Florida law requires the agency to do so.
It’s par for the course for an agency that blocks all public access to arrest information as retaliation for the Palm Beach Post asking legitimate, tough questions.
Sheriff Ric Bradshaw’s move was unprecedented and, quite frankly, petty. We expect better. Conversations with folks in the State Attorney’s Office, the County Commission and even Statewide offices suggest we’re not alone. Bradshaw has spent more than a decade in his office which is not term limited and immune from checks-and-balances. The Sheriff is free to do anything he chooses with his roughly $500 million budget. He can only be sidelined by the Governor.
Perhaps it is time for Bradshaw to finish out his term and for term limits to be in place moving forward. We can’t blame Sheriff Bradshaw for being a savvy Politico and amassing power over a decade. But the public can change the laws so it doesn’t happen again.
Join BocaNewsNow.com founder Andrew Colton next week as he hosts the 610WIOD morning show for Jimmy Cefalo. This topic is likely to come up — unless Sheriff Bradshaw locks him up in a secure, undisclosed location. (We’re kidding. We think).
But don’t expect to hear from Sheriff Bradshaw. We’d like to believe he’s just misunderstood or misrepresented, but he refuses to make himself available for interviews.