Former Florida data analyst Rebekah Jones to stand trial in January

TALAHASSEE – Former Florida Department of Health data analyst Rebekah Jones, who drew national attention when she said Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration manipulated COVID-19 data, is set to stand trial in January over allegations that she improperly accessed a department computer system.

Jones’ trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 23 in Leon County Circuit Court, according to a notice posted this week in an online filing.

Jones, who is running for a congressional seat from Northwest Florida in the November election, was fired from her post at the Department of Health in May 2020.

She was charged in January 2021 with illegally accessing the computer system in November 2020.

Authorities accused her of sending a message to an internal Health Ministry multi-user email account.

“It’s time to speak up before 17,000 more people die. You know it’s wrong. You don’t have to be a part of this. Be a hero. Speak up before it’s too late,” said the message. Jones denied sending the message.

Seeking unsuccessfully to have the case thrown out, his lawyers said the system was used by multiple people sharing a username and password.

Sean N. Ayres