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MCSO Recommends Charges After Concluding Scott Hopes Criminal Investigation

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Former Manatee County Administrator Scott Hopes might be in hot water. The Manatee County Sheriff's Office announced Wednesday that it had concluded its investigation into multiple criminal complaints against Hopes and has recommended that the State Attorney's Office file charges.

The MCSO put out a press release stating the following:

"Scott Hopes, former administrator of Manatee County Government was the subject of multiple complaints received by The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office in February of this year. These complaints alleged criminal violations of Florida’s public records, theft, and notary laws, under sections 119.10, 117.105, 812.14 (2) ( c ), and 817.569, Florida Statutes. Charges have been recommended.

"The investigation and relevant materials were forwarded to the State Attorney’s Office for review on 11/15/2023. Pending that review and requests from the SAO for additional information or investigative work, MCSO will not be releasing further details of the case and defer all inquiries to the SAO. (Citing active criminal investigation exemption, FSS 119.071 (2) ( c ) 1.)"

Hopes was hired in 2021 after a newly elected county commission moved to fire Cheri Coryea, despite possessing little to no relative experience. Hopes later lost the confidence of the board, which decided to part ways with the former school board member in January. Hopes was later hired as CEO of troubled private aviation club AeroVanti in June but was let go in just four months.