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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Doug Hughes, who landed gyrocopter outside Capitol, again rejects plea deal



Gyrocopter-flying, Homeland Security-defying, big-money-in-politics-decrying Florida mailman Doug Hughes is back in the news.

From the Associated Press:

WASHINGTON - Douglas Hughes, the Florida mail carrier who landed a gyrocopter on the West Lawn of the Capitol as part of a protest against the influence of big money in politics, said Thursday that he has rejected a plea deal that would strip him of his right to vote.

Douglas Hughes said after a hearing in federal court in Washington that prosecutors had offered him a deal that would have let him plead guilty to one felony count. But he said he rejected that deal and offered to plead guilty to misdemeanors because pleading guilty to a felony would mean he can't vote or run for office in Florida. The Florida Constitution bars convicted felons from voting, serving on a jury or holding public office. People convicted of a felony must wait a minimum of five years after finishing their sentences and any supervised release before applying to get those rights restored.

Hughes, from Ruskin, was arrested April 15 after flying from Gettysburg, Pa., to Washington and flouting flying restrictions around and over the nation's capital. He has been allowed to return to Florida while his case continues.

Read more here


[Last modified: Thursday, October 8, 2015 4:02pm]


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