Florida continues its campaign to be the taint of the nation: a man is suing the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office for improperly including his photo and name four times on its weekly “Wheel of Fugitives” feature, a ripoff of a popular television game show when he wasn’t actually a fugitive, costing the man his job. The Associated Press reports David Gay was driving into his first day on a new job when his intended boss called him to tell him not to show up; the boss had seen Gay’s photo on the previous night’s “Wheel of Fugitives,” like the one in the clip shown above as an example of the programming, hosted by Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey himself. The company, the man said, no longer wanted to employ Gay because he was featured on the segment.
Gay had previously been “in the system,” having received a deferred adjudication decision on an unspecified charge; “deferred adjudication” is similar to a “probation before judgment” decision in other states in which the judge can impose restrictions and requirements on a defendant which, once complete, lifts any probation and leaves the individual’s record largely clean. However, Gay was in custody the first time he was featured on the Sheriff’s “Let’s joke about crime” gag, and he was participating in the court’s program when he was featured another two times; his last appearance on the segment was aired on the day he was sentenced by a Florida court to probation, which is not what a fugitive does. He was also jailed temporarily in relation to a domestic violence charge that appears to be a case of mistaken identity with his father, of the same name. Gay seeks $50,000 in damages from the Sheriff’s office.