Dan Sullivan, Times Staff

Dan Sullivan

Times Staff

I got into this business because I like telling stories. The best stories, I think, are ones that touch on themes of justice and injustice, compassion and forgiveness, choices and consequences. You can find a lot of that in the local court and criminal justice system, which I write about for the Times. I was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, went to high school in Massachusetts, and came to Florida for college. I graduated from the University of Tampa in 2006. My wife, Meg, is a teacher. Outside work, I enjoy long walks, road trips, and reading public records. I’m a nerd.

Hillsborough prosecutors dish on racial disparities, fairness for FIU study

Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren speaks during a news conference in January 2018. Warren's office is participating in a two-year study from Florida International University, which will examine prosecutorial effectiveness and fairness.
The Hillsborough State Attorney's Office is one of four prosecutors' offices nationwide to participate in a two-year academic study focused on improving prosecutorial practices.

Florida bucks trend by keeping shelves stocked with execution drugs. But are they humane?

The execution chamber at Florida State Prison in Starke, as seen from the witness room. When the curtains open witnesses see the condemned strapped to the gurney for injection with a lethal combination of drugs. [Florida Department of Corrections]
Records show the state obtained new vials of lethal injection drugs as recently as August. Debate continues over their use.

As next execution looms, Florida debates the drugs it uses to kill

The execution chamber at Florida State Prison in Starke, as seen from the witness room. When the curtains open witnesses see the condemned strapped to the gurney for injection with a lethal combination of drugs. [Florida Department of Corrections]
Jose Jimenez is set to be executed Thursday night. Like many death row inmates, he has challenged the drugs Florida uses to execute prisoners.

Hillsborough firefighter used 'Magical Butter' machine to make cannabis oil in a fire station, deputies say

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue lieutenant Tavoris Allen, 36, was arrested  Dec. 10 after deputies say he converted marijuana into homemade cannabis oil inside a fire station. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
The fire lieutenant was arrested on a charge of possession of a controlled substance after marijuana and cannabis oil were found in a machine inside a fire station workout room.

Tampa mom accused in girl's drowning deemed incompetent to stand trial

BRONTE WITTPENN   |   Times
Shakayla Denson walks escorted toward her defense attorneys during the pre-trial detention hearing at Hillsborough County Courthouse in Tampa on Wednesday, August 8, 2018. Denson is being charged with first-degree murder after leaving her four-year-old daughter Je’Hyrah Daniels to drown in the Hillsborough River on Thursday, August 2.
Shakayla Denson, accused of leaving her 4-year-old daughter to drown in the Hillsborough River, will undergo treatment in a state hospital before the case against her can continue.