Florida police raid home of fired health official who built Covid data tracker, seize ‘several devices’


A former Florida Department of Health employee posted footage on social media showing police officers with their guns drawn entering her house during a raid.

Rebekah Jones, who reportedly built Florida’s COVID-19 case tracker and was fired earlier this year for alleged insubordination, posted video and comments about the incident on her Twitter account Monday, accusing Gov. Ron DeSantis of ordering the raid and saying he “sent the Gestapo” to get her.

The former state employee became a sort of hero for the left after she claimed in May that she was fired from her job because she refused to fudge the state’s coronavirus numbers. On Monday,  she took to Twitter to claim the Florida law enforcement officers who carried out a search warrant at her home had “pointed a gun in my face” and “pointed guns at my kids.”

“At 8:30 am this morning, state police came into my house and took all my hardware and tech,” she tweeted. “They were serving a warrant on my computer after DOH filed a complaint.”

“They took my phone and the computer I use every day to post the case numbers in Florida, and school cases for the entire country,” Jones added, claiming there was “evidence of corruption at the state level.”

“They claimed it was about a security breach. This was DeSantis. He sent the gestapo,” Jones wrote.

“This is what happens to scientists who do their job honestly,” Jones wrote on Twitter. “This is what happens to people who speak truth to power.”

Jones appeared on CNN a short time later and claimed the governor is “trying to get to my sources.” Host Chris Cuomo told her he wanted to give her an opportunity to speak out in her own defense.

The officers seized Jones’ computer equipment, according to Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokeswoman Gretl Plessinger who confirmed that a search warrant had been served at Jones’ home, Fox News reported.

The Department of Health’s “investigation began last month following a complaint by Florida Department of Health that a person illegally hacked into their emergency alert system,” FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen said in a statement.

“As part of our investigation, FDLE agents served a search warrant this morning at the Centerville Court residence where Ms. Jones lives after determining the home was the location that the unauthorized message was sent from,” Swearingen said.

“Agents knocked and called Ms. Jones both announcing the search warrant and encouraging her to cooperate. Ms. Jones refused to come to the door for 20 minutes and hung-up on agents,” the statement continued, refuting Jones’ claim that guns were pointed at her and her children.

“After several attempts, Ms. Jones allowed agents inside. Agents entered the home in accordance with normal protocols and seized several devices that will be forensically analyzed. At no time were weapons pointed at anyone in the home. Any evidence will be referred to the State Attorney for prosecution as appropriate,”  Swearingen added.

The data scientist claimed back in May that she was terminated from her job because she refused to alter data on COVID-19 cases in Florida. She was immediately hailed as a hero by the left and DeSantis was smeared for alleged corruption. But the Republican governor’s office made it clear that Jones was fired for her “repeated course of insubordination.”

“Rebekah Jones exhibited a repeated course of insubordination during her time with the Department, including her unilateral decisions to modify the Department’s COVID-19 dashboard without input or approval from the epidemiological team or her supervisors,” a statement from DeSantis’ office at the time read.

And Jones apparently has quite a record.

A Daily Mail report back in May revealed that Jones “has a lurid past including three arrests, a torrid affair with her student and being fired from her previous university teaching job.”

Jones created her own version of a COVID-19 case tracker for Florida after she was fired from her DOH job this year, setting up a crowdfunding campaign to help. She tweeted her GoFundMe information along with her vow to “get back to work” despite the governor’s alleged attempt to “get me to shut up.”

Naturally, the left still came to her defense.

Jones updated her Twitter followers with a late-night message saying she would soon be getting a new computer and was flooded with another wave of responses gushing about her “brave” fight.

“Imagine if the camera wasn’t recording,” she added. “Imagine if I weren’t white. Imagine this were you. Because one day, it might be.”

Frieda Powers

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