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Thursday, October 06, 2022

Sheriff’s son faces charge for driving with suspended license

Gov. Ron DeSantis appoints different state attorney to avoid conflict of interest in prosecution

The Alachua County Sheriff’s son, a habitual traffic offender, faces a charge of driving on a suspended license. 

Police served a warrant to 30-year-old Clovis Watson IV early Thursday morning at the Alachua County jail. The court released Watson on the condition he not drive without a valid license. 

Watson’s crime history dates back to 2010 with multiple traffic violations, according to court records. He was also arrested for burglary, trespassing and stalking, but the charges were either dropped or Watson was put on probation.

He pleaded not guilty to the traffic offense, which occurred June 3 at 3300 SW Archer Road near the MetroPCS store, on June 28. 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order July 6 appointing state attorney John Durrett of the Third Judicial Circuit to prosecute the case to avoid any conflict of interest. Brian Kramer, the state attorney for the Eighth Judicial Circuit, which includes Alachua County, said he notified the governor of the conflict and requested a different prosecutor earlier this week.

Watson declined to comment on his charge. Alachua County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Kaley Behl declined to comment on Sheriff Clovis Watson Jr.’s behalf and said it was a GPD matter. GPD could not be reached for comment, and GPD’s spokesperson Graham Glover announced he will no longer serve in the position as of 5 p.m. Thursday. 

Contact Omar at Follow him on Twitter @OAteyah. 

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Omar Ateyah

Omar Ateyah is a third-year journalism student and the Alligator's Race and Equity reporter. He previously served as the Alligator's crime reporter and as a news assistant on the Metro Desk. He enjoys going on long, thoughtful walks. 

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