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2022 Election

Joe Mullins Had Contentious Exchanges, Invoked Commissioner Status, in Traffic Stops

ⓒ Stephen Helfrich
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Joe Mullins, Chair of the Flagler County Commission, was shown on video to have had somewhat argumentative encounters while being pulled over by Florida Highway Patrol troopers in multiple recent traffic stops. The Commissioner was pulled over in Seminole and Flagler counties recently, both for speed violations.

Mullins in both instances attempted to invoke his status as a County Commissioner in conversation with the troopers who’d pulled him over. In a June incident, he was stopped on I-4 in Seminole County for going over 90 mph in a 60 mph zone. Two FHP cars dispatched to stop him, both remarking afterward that it seemed to them that Mullins was trying to ignore them and potentially try to escape the traffic stop.

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The police report detailing Mullins’ Seminole County traffic stop.

Mullins and the trooper who issued the ticket exchanged in a verbal discussion about the incident, with Mullins at one time being told “if you get out of that car, you’re going to jail”. Most of the exchange was hard to make out in the FHP dashcam video, but Mullins at one point appeared to have told trooper “I’m over the state”. It’s not immediately clear how or if Mullins was describing the power dynamic of a elected official, but the troopers were acting within their jurisdiction in writing him a citation. He also issued a sharp critique of a maneuver by one of the troopers during the stop in which they’d briefly pulled up alongside his car before falling back.

A report from the stop states that Mullins flashed his business card to the trooper, invoking his status as a County Commissioner. The report described him as “extremely condescending, belligerent, illogical, and disrespectful”. It also stated that Mullins told the trooper his career in law enforcement would be over if he made an arrest, for failure to obey a lawful order.

In both the Seminole and Flagler County stops, Mullins invoked his status as a County Commissioner to the trooper who pulled him over. In Flagler on I-95, Mullins again handed a business card explaining as much to the trooper; it didn’t seem to affect the outcome of the traffic stop. In both situations he wrote the same letter to the applicable county judge asking for leniency and to not issue points to his license. He was assigned a four-hour driving course for his Flagler infraction.

In 2017, Mullins was given a speeding ticket in St. Johns County. He subsequently attempted to contact Flagler Sheriff Rick Staly to have him ask then-St. Johns Sheriff David Shoar to help with his situation. Staly rebuffed Mullins’ request. In 2020 Mullins was the passenger in a traffic stop in Palm Coast; in this stop he invoked his name and told the deputy that he knew Sheriff Staly personally.

Title X, Chapter 12, Section 6 in Florida law states: “No public officer, employee of an agency, or local government attorney shall corruptly use or attempt to use his or her official position or any property or resource which may be within his or her trust, or perform his or her official duties, to secure a special privilege, benefit, or exemption for himself, herself, or others.”

Mullins has not yet issued an official response to discussion surrounding these traffic stop incidents. He is currently campaigning for a second term on the County Commission, against challengers Leann Pennington and Jane Gentile-Youd.

Written By

Chris Gollon is a Flagler County resident since 2004, as well as a staple of the local independent music scene and avid observer of Central Florida politics, arts, and recreation.

8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. TR

    July 12, 2022 at 5:18 pm

    Mullins is a joke and needs to get booted from his seat or not be re-elected. He’s the biggest embarrassment this county has ever seen. He lives by the saying do as I say and not as I do. He thinks he’s above the law and he’s proven that many times in the past including the last two times he has been pulled over for speeding within the past month.
    GET MULLINS OUT!!!!

  2. TR

    July 13, 2022 at 6:01 pm

    Well just saw the report on the TV news where Mullins got pulled over on I-95. Maybe a lot of more people saw it in Flagler County and will know what kind of idiot he really is. Unfortunately they did not report that Mullins got pulled over again about a week later for speeding again except the next time was in Seminole County.

  3. Truth

    July 15, 2022 at 10:54 am

    What a repugnant, entitled POS. Go ahead and vote him right back into another term. I’m sure he’s sorry and will change.

  4. Moo Goo

    July 15, 2022 at 4:46 pm

    Mullins is a HUGE entitled POS and does not represent the people. Vote him out, or better yet, remove him from office!

  5. Jim Bernhardt

    July 15, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    The epitome of entitlement and narcissism. The people of his district can do much better and he needs to go. He is not a public servant. He needs limits and consequences, otherwise he will continue to abuse his privileges and mistreat the men and women of law enforcement.

  6. JANET LEMYRE

    July 15, 2022 at 7:56 pm

    I saw the video mr. Mullins was not belligerent or disrespectful or illogical but he could have just quietly taken the ticket and said thank you to the officer for doing his job. That would have been the right thing to do.

  7. Teri Bond

    July 20, 2022 at 9:12 pm

    Does the Flagler county commissioner get a private vehicle allowance? In other words, do our taxes pay for Joe Mullins’ Ferrari?

  8. AJ

    July 25, 2022 at 5:22 am

    Great reporting!

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