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CFO Sink Signs Settlement Agreement for Alan Crotzer

5/6/2008

CONTACT:  Kevin Cate or Brannon Jordan
(850) 413-2842  
 
TALLAHASSEE — Florida Chief Financial Alex Sink today signed an agreement for the state of Florida to provide a $1.25 million settlement to compensate Alan Jerome Crotzer for more than 24 years of wrongful incarceration.
 
“The compensation provided by the State of Florida today is no match for the pain caused during Alan’s 24 years of wrongful imprisonment,” said CFO Sink. “However, I thank the Florida Legislature for appropriating these funds in order to restore some sense of justice in Mr. Crotzer’s life.”
 
Crotzer was arrested and prosecuted in 1981 for crimes he did not commit, which included robbery with a weapon, aggravated assault, false imprisonment and rape.  He received a 130 year prison sentence. Despite an appeal, Crotzer served over 24 years in prison, until a DNA test confirmed his innocence.  He was exonerated on January 23, 2006.
 
During the 2008 Legislative Session, the Legislature passed HB 7037, a bill to compensate Crotzer for his wrongful incarceration.  The bill provided $1.25 million to fund an annuity for Mr. Crotzer. Under this annuity, he will receive an initial lump sum payment of $250,000 and receive $6,700 per month for 20 years.  Compensation to Mr. Crotzer will begin on June 1, 2008.  State Representative Ray Sansom (R Fort Walton Beach) and State Senators Dave Aronberg (D-Greenacres) and Alex Villalobos (R-Miami) sponsored the bill.
 
As a statewide elected officer of the Florida Cabinet, Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink oversees the Department of Financial Services, a multi-division state agency responsible for management of state funds and unclaimed property, assisting consumers who request information and help related to financial services, and investigating financial fraud. CFO Sink also serves as the State Fire Marshal.