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Questions raised after antisemitic flyers thrown in Winter Garden leads to traffic violation

WINTER GARDEN, Fla. — There are questions surrounding a citation issued against a man accused of spreading antisemitic flyers in the community.

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The flyers were thrown from a car in a Winter Garden neighborhood over the weekend. The person accused of doing it was issued a traffic violation, despite a new law that makes tossing out hate messages a misdemeanor.

Oakland police said the FBI was contacted, but at this point there are no criminal charges because it’s considered free speech and their hands are tied.

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“Those of us night owls were barefoot, picking them up, hoping none of the kids saw them.”

Though the person was caught and cited for a traffic violation, a new Florida law that went into effect last months prohibits material to intimidate or threaten be distributed onto private property.

Rep. Randy Fine, who co-sponsored the bill, said he’s reached out to the Oakland police chief to get some answers, but said he hasn’t heard back.

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National organizations like Stop Anti-Semitism said they’ve done the same and aren’t getting anywhere either.

“We’re hoping to connect with him and provide some education into why this isn’t just free speech, and what he and his department can specifically do to stop this rhetoric,” said Liora Rez with Stop Anti-Semitism. “We’d love to get to the bottom of this.”

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Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.

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