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She Released Video of Raid on Her Home. Now, the Cops' Video

Police bodycam footage released after fired Fla. data scientist Rebekah Jones put up her own online
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 12, 2020 9:00 AM CST

(Newser) – Police bodycam video taken of the Monday raid at fired data scientist Rebekah Jones' home was released Thursday by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, with the agency saying it did so after its agents were "vilified" following Jones posting her own footage. Per NBC News, the police video shows a Tallahassee cop and an FDLE agent ringing the bell at Jones' home and knocking, then banging on the door, with an agent yelling, "Police, search warrant! Open the door!" When Jones finally opens the door, she warns officers her kids are in the home, then yells at one inside, "Why is he pointing a gun at the stairs? There are children up there." In a Twitter thread posted Thursday, Jones—who says she was fired earlier this year after being pressured to present inaccurate state COVID-19 data—addressed the newly released footage, saying cops "waited about 13 minutes outside while I got dressed, and were ready to break my door down with a sledgehammer."

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Jones, who's also seen asking her husband and kids to come down the stairs "carefully," says she wasn't presented with a search warrant until the agents were leaving hours later. The FDLE, for its part, claims the "situation continued for 23 minutes without cooperation of Ms. Jones, including several phone calls to her," per NBC. "This video demonstrates that FDLE agents exercised extreme patience," Commissioner Richard Swearingen says in a statement, adding that Jones should release "the entirety of the video she recorded while agents were present in her home," per the Tallahassee Democrat. "As this video will demonstrate, any risk or danger to Ms. Jones or her family was the result of her actions." After criticism of the raid, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis defended the officers this week, saying, "These people did their jobs," per ABC News. (Read more Florida stories.)

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