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Florida sheriff says he’ll deputize gun owners in response to BLM protesters

The Black top cop tells demonstrators that they need to behave when they come to his county; ‘you’ve been warned’

By Biba Adams, The Grio

Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels announced this week that he will make “special deputies of every lawful gun owner in this county,” if he feels that the Florida county is overwhelmed by Black Lives Matter protesters.

Jacksonville is the largest city in the county and is set to be the site of the Republican National Convention where President Donald Trump will accept his party’s nomination for reelection as President of the United States of America.

Daniels, the county’s first Black sheriff, has been featured in several viral videos where he says that he is “tough on crime.” The newest announcement was in a three-minute video where he stood backed by 18 deputies.

“And if you come to Clay County and you think for one second, we’ll bend our backs for you, you’re sadly mistaken.” he said. “I know what happens when lawlessness prevails. And in this day and time, God is raising up men and women just like the folks standing behind me who will have strong backbones and will stand in the gap between lawlessness and the citizenry we’re sworn to protect.”

Daniels is up for re-election and is being challenged by four opponents. One of them, Mike Taylor, is an investigator for the state’s attorney’s office. Taylor has been endorsed by former Florida governor, Jeb Bush.

Taylor said that Daniels’ message demonstrates that the man is unfit for his office.

“I don’t believe it was intended to be a pro-police message. I believe it was intended to be a propaganda message.” Taylor said, “Real police professionalism actually acknowledges that professionally trained police officers cannot be replaced by a swearing-in ceremony.”

Daniels is under investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for having an affair with a fellow officer, who was later falsely arrested by Daniels.

A transcript of the video was posted by The Palm Beach Post.

In it, Daniels ends his speech saying, “Yes, we’ll protect your constitutional rights as long as you remain under the umbrellas of peaceful protest or peaceful march.” Daniels said, “But the second you step out from up under the protection of the Constitution, we’ll be waiting on you and we’ll give you everything you want. That’s what we’re sworn to do. That’s what we’re going to do. You’ve been warned.”

This article originally appeared in The Grio.

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