Pre-Trial Hearing for Suspended Hillsborough Prosecutor

TALLAHASSEE -- Lawyers representing suspended Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren and the state of Florida meet in a pretrial conference Wednesday afternoon, ahead of a federal trial set to begin next week.

Governor DeSantis suspended Warren August 4th. Warren is suing to get reinstated, claiming that his free speech rights were violated. The governor said Warren decided not to enforce Florida law, when he signed pledges involving abortion or transgender health care.

The two legal teams are expected to run through several issues with U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle. The biggest appears to be whether Warren's lawyers can call Governor DeSantis or his chief of staff to testify. The state's team says he can't. Warren says the parties will try to streamline their disagreements as much as possible.

Fourteen people have been deposed in the case. The governor has deposed Warren, chief communications officer Melanie Snow Waxler, spokesman Grayson Kamm, Jeria Wilds and Renee Muratti. Warren's team has deposed current State Attorney Susan Lopez, Hillsborough sheriff Chad Chronister, Christina Pushaw, who has served as rapid response officer for the governor's office and his re-election campaign, Larry Keefe, Ray Treadwell, Andrew Madry, Ryan Newman, Gary Weisman, and Taryn Fenske.

Trial is set to begin November 29th and is expected to run about four days.

Photo: Andrew Warren

The pre-trial hearing is set for 3 p.m. in Tallahassee.

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