Flagler County Commissioner Joe Mullins, who is seeking re-election, this week falsely claimed that the Fraternal Order of Police’s Flagler/Palm Coast lodge and the local 10-13 club of retired New York City Police officers support him. Presidents of both organizations sharply disavowed the claim and criticized Mullins for the fabrications.
For Mullins, it was only the latest in a series of embarrassing or defiant run-ins with law enforcement over the past several weeks, a constituency he claims to support and respect.
Twice last month Mullins disrespected and attempted to pull rank on Florida Highway Patrol troopers in two separate speeding incidents. He was trying to avoid getting ticketed by abusing his authority, claiming that “I run the county” or that he is “over the state.” It did not work: in one encounter, a trooper warned him that he would go to jail if he persisted in defying orders.
Mullins, who is barely five weeks away from the Aug. 23 primary (he faces fellow-Republican Leann Pennington) has been reeling from criticism over his encounters, which were recorded on the troopers’ videos and made national news. He has been looking for ways to burnish his threadbare credentials and beat back perceptions of flagrant hypocrisy. (On Tuesday, he donated $500 to the GoFundMe account of the family of Chelsea Hawk, who died in a car crash Sunday and who Mullins ceaselessly tormented and vilified online over the last few years.)
This week, Mullins extended the disrespect to retired law enforcement officers.
Fabrications are not uncommon for the commissioner, who turns 52 net week. But he has often skated by, unchallenged, abetted and rewarded by two colleagues on the County Commission, enabling him to survive on a majority dependent on his own third vote. This time the falsehoods drew a bitter disclaimer from Marty Syken, president of the Northeast 10-13 Club, the local chapter of a fraternal organization of retired New York City police officers, and an equally forceful–and disbelieving–disavowal from Dave Mazzone, president of the Flagler/Palm Coast Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 171.
Mullins was the guest speaker at the 10-13 Club’s July 18 luncheon meeting at the Elks Club in Palm Coast, where he spoke of supporting law enforcement, and spoke a great deal about himself. He drew on that lunch to then post that he had “the support of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge#171 Flagler/Palm Coast Florida and the North Florida Retired Police association.”
The FOP was not part of that event. Its members were not at that meeting. Mullins, an associate member of the group, had not asked to speak before the organization, nor had he been invited, Mazzone said in an interview this evening.
There is no such thing as a North Florida Retired Police association. It isn’t clear if Mullins mangled the name of the 10-13 Club, or if he was attempting to invent himself the support of a large-sounding organization of retired police stretching all over Northeast Florida.
The post caused difficulties for both organizations. Mazzone had to spend two hours on the phone today with the district office of his organizations to explain that FOP had nothing to do with Mullins’s claim and sort out the commissioner’s fabrication. Mazzone had to do so after an individual, taking Mullins’s post at his word, called the district in Jacksonville to complain about the local lodge’s purported support of Mullins.
“Let me straighten one thing out, he did not appear to our group,” Mazzone said. That was a 10-13 meeting exclusively. “At no time did he ever come and speak to the FOP, nor did we support him, nor do we endorse him.”
Endorsements are laborious processes, he said, involving the district office in Jacksonville, which does a background check and either agrees or rejects the choice. In order to avoid the hassle, “our policy is that we do not endorse any candidate nor support any candidate.” Mazzone’s policy is that candidates can appear before the membership for five minutes, but if one appears, all are invited to appear.
Mullins addressed his false Facebook page with the organization. “He just said it was a slip up on words,” Mazzone said. “Well, it’s a slip up that I don’t like. I don’t condone.”
Mullins eliminated the claim that he had the FOP’s support in subsequent editing of the post. But to this day, he has not corrected the falsehood that he spoke before FOP.
The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #171 holds its monthly membership meetings on the second Tuesday of the month, what would have been July 12. On June 26, three days after FlaglerLive first reported Mullins’s attempt, in a letter to a local judge, to beg his way out of points after he was ticketed on I-95, the FOP Facebook page reposted a story about the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office’s asset-forfeited seizure of a Corvette Z06 from a drug dealer, transforming it into a sheriff’s cruiser. The FOP added this line: “FCSO or FHP should add one of these for I-95 speed.” (The FCSO is the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office.)
His claims about the 10-13 club, which he inaccurately referred to by a non-existent name, caused its own share of problems.
“It has come to the attention of the board of directors,” Marty Syken, the group’s president, wrote in a message to the membership this afternoon, “that Mr. Mullins took the liberty on one of his Facebook pages to post a photo of himself addressing the members with the club banner in the background. This could be construed to indicate that the club endorses him. The club finds this distressing to say the least, given the fact that Mr. Mullins has had some negative contact with law enforcement personnel which were not flattering to Mr. Mullins.” Syken suggested his membership “see internet,” a reference to the copious reporting on Mullins’s recent infractions and run-ins with law enforcement.
“The club,” Syken continued, “has no affiliation with Mr. Mullins whatsoever and more importantly the club has not and will not endorse Mr. Mullin or any political candidate.” Endorsing is against the club’s by-laws.
Syken also specified: “Mr. Mullins is not a member, did not ask to join our club and was not made an honorary member,” and he said the organization’s board of directors apologized for the confusion Mullins may have created.
Mazzone in the interview also referred to Mullins’s negative contact with law enforcement. “I’m a policeman. I was a policeman, I always will be a policeman in my mind,” Mazzone said, “and if you can’t respect the policeman, well, then I don’t have respect for you. Maybe that’s the problem with everybody in the world anymore. There’s no respect for law enforcement, for teachers, for professionals. People do not have respect anymore. I think we lost that.” He advised Mullins to check his facts before he speaks.
Mullins reworded the same Facebook post in question 10 times, according to Facebook’s edit history, an indication of both his impulsive habits on social media and his inability, or more likely a calculated unwillingness, to get it right, even after repeated reflection.
He first posted about his appearance at the club at 6:17 p.m. on July 18, a few hours after the alleged lunch. The post seemed straightforward with boilerplate language. But it already bore two fabrications: “Very honored to speak today to the Flagler County FOP and the North Florida Retired Police association.” He had spoken to neither.
Mullins never refers to the Northeast Florida 10-13 Club by its accurate name, even if he was intending to refer to it. He did post an image of three individuals sitting at tables, two of them with their back to the camera, one of them seeming to be intentionally blocking his face from the picture-taker, all of them sitting by a large blue banner of the 10-13 club–the banner Syken was referring to in his email to members.
Seven minutes after Mullins posted about his appearance before retired cops, he amended his original post to: “Very honored to speak today to the Flagler County Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #171 Flagler/Palm Coast Florida and the North Florida Retired Police association. Affordable Housing for deputies, mental health services for addiction and better pay and retirement benefits. As a county we can and will focus on these issues.”
He also turned the reference to the lodge into a tagging link, attempting to have his post appear on the FOP’s page and garner more attention (FOP either hid it or disallowed the tag: the item does not appear there). Mullins, whose own page does not by itself get too much attention, is a serial tagger, at times blanketing every Facebook “neighborhood” page with such tags, giving the appearances of a larger follower than he has.
A quarter of an hour later, the post was again edited. Mullins dropped affordable housing for deputies and started taking on drugs: “The top issue is Drugs and fentanyl coming into our county at an alarming rate! We are one of the top counties in overdose deaths. We will bring the mental health and treatment facilities into the county. This is the only proven thing to work.”
At 7:09 p.m., the post bulked up on fabrication: “Very honored to speak and have the support of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #171 Flagler/Palm Coast Florida and the North Florida Retired Police association.” (Emphasis added.) Almost an hour later he edited the post to add the word “today.” He perpetuated the lie as he edited the post two hours later to say, in capital letters, that drugs ‘ISN’T ISSUE TO PLAY AROUND WITH.”
The post was unchanged for another day and a half after that. Just before noon today–at 11:50 a.m.–Mullins reworded it, dropping any reference to being supported: “Very honored today to speak and Fully support of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #171 Flagler/Palm Coast Florida and the North Florida Retired Police association.” The post was incoherent, but also the closest any of the version came to an approximation of truth, since he could defensibly say that he spoke that day–without specifying to whom–and that he supported FOP and the ghost organization.
He corrected the incoherence nine minutes later, if not completely, to: “Very honored today to speak and give my full support of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #171 Flagler/Palm Coast Florida and the North Florida Retired Police association.” But he preserved the fabrication about the mystery North Florida association. As of Wednesday evening, that’s still the wording.
Facebook noted below his post: “Joe F Mullins limited who can comment on this post.”
The pictures never changed, including a blurry one showing him at the Elks podium, and the picture of the three individuals near the large banner of the 10-13 Club, plus the picture of a young man or boy at the buffet table, seen from behind, his “Joe Mullins” campaign shirt clearly displayed.
Today, Mullins posted, among other items, that he was traveling to a meeting of the National Association of Counties. He posted a picture of members of is family traveling with him. The meeting starts its four-day annual conference Thursday at the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center. The registration fee is $600, not including hotel accommodations, transportation, board, rental car or speeding tickets.
The county said on Thursday that, aside from the membership to the association that the county pays annually, it paid Mullins’s registration fee of $600, but Mullins was picking up the tab for transportation, hotel accommodations and other such costs. He is the only county official attending.
Karen Knights says
He should be in jail and definitely turn in his resignation he’s an embarrassment to our wonderful county. Hope GA fries his ass…gotta go Joe..he also stated he took traffic school…I teach traffic school for Flagler and Volusia County I would stop teaching before I ever let that person in my class. I live in the Mondex which he professed to help. NOT he has called me every name in the book on FB very rude and nasty
Mullens should be sanction& removed from ballot.How can we have this Crazy Man represent us!!!!
LAW ABIDING CITIZEN says
Believe it or not there are [email protected]@T CRAZY people just like him out there in our community who are going to try to get him elected, he promises them positions, they don’t care about the very scary state of affairs our communities and our county is in. This is why we must all ban together and get out and VOTE LEANN PENNINGTON.
Let me understand this, Jo Mullins Lie6,No I refuse to believe it, Or I’m as full of Shit as Mullins!!!!
What a perpetual Liar!
Another Narcissistic politician useless spending our tax dollars on his own agenda!
Can’t wait for this disgrace to be gone soon.
Thanks again Flagler Live.
Morgan Monaco says
Be gone soon I hope. But I will not be surprise to see that piece of shit be reelected because this area now is full of scumbag nonsense like him.
Hush hush, sweet Charlotte says
Does this mean he is blowing off the candidate forum with his opponent Thursday night at the Palm Coast Community Center? I would have paid to see that! I just read that the Trump Club endorsed him.
Chump Club does love narcissists.
As a former NYC Police Officer and NYC Firefighter Mr Mullins continues disrespect our first responders. He continues to fabricate the truth.
Joe Mullins does not deserve the respect or our vote. Let’s stop this abuse and vote for his opponent in the primary.
Let’s send a clear message to all the county commissioners. You are supposed to be representing your constituents.
Call me Ishmael says
Joe, you’re a dry drunk . . . at a minimum.
Call your sponsor.
Then get the hell out of here.
Been There says
He’s not dry.
Pinocchio Mullins is a fraud and a liar
The Retired Police Organizations support Joe for Jailtime; nothing more. He shows nothing but disrespect and disdain for Law Enforcement.
LAW ABIDING CITIZEN says
So this maniacal delusional lier Mullins took the advantage of taking on a very serious subject such as the fentayl epidemic which is killing thousands everyday and falsely linked it to our law enforcement to benefit himself. This is totally unacceptable behavior, he needs to NOT run for re-election and to either STEP DOWN or be relieved of his duties immediately by his fellow FCBOCC commissioners and they can do this , if they still continue to endorse his behavior they all need to go and this includes the Palm Coast city council members who are his buddies or running PERIOD. When is enough going to be enough! We need to take our county back! VOTE LEANN PENNINGTON for FCBOCC and VOTE THERSEA CARLI PONTIERI for PALM COAST CITY COUNCIL
No to Theresa, NO NO NO!
YES Theresa, YES, YES, YES !
LAW ABIDING CITIZEN says
has Lowe denounced Mullins yet? or is it just a couple of traffic tickets as Danko puts it?
Tim Mcauliffe says
It seems some Flagler Couny Republicans have finally noticedthe bad smell in the punchbowl.
Palm Coasters have to wear bags over their heads says
A family vacation on the taxpayer dime, maybe Joe can get special treatment at the resort when he tells them who he is and how great he is.
The expectation is that the county would pick up the tab for Mullins alone, not for his family. Officials are not barred from taking family on junkets, but they are required to keep expenses separate. In fact, as we clarified in the article, the county is only paying the commissioner’s registration fee for this particular event, not for other expenses.
Purveyor of Truth says
As if county voters needed anymore evidence to reject Mullins. His bad character is clear for all to see.
Voters, you have a kinder, decent conservative candidate with integrity to elect commissioner.
Please vote for Leann Pennington for County Commissioner on August 23rd.
Randy Bentwick says
He’s just like his orange hero…if you can’t earn respect – invent it.
He’s a bush-league con man.
Richard Smith says
Mullins just can’t keep putting his foot in his mouth. He’s running scared. He know his days are numbered. Remember people
HE RUNS THIS COUNTY…
A right of passage, a badge of honor for MAGAs.
Who can tell the biggest lie and repeat it the most times.
ULTRA MAGA says
A ‘Pelosi Vacation’ to Gaylord Rockies Resort(paid by the Taxpayers or the Developers?)! Come On Man! A FAKE endorsement by two Police groups! Come On Man! Check RINO-Man’s Voting record on development projects! Wake Up voters of Flagler County and do NOT re-elect Mullins! Thank you Flaglerlive for showing the TRUTH about Mullins!
Joe Mullin is the lowest of lowest and as you can see he is just like his idol #45, makes up lies and thinks no one will catch him. Wonder what is next trick is? Please Flagler County residents get rid of this loser when you go vote.
He is a con man and should never be allowed to hold public office.
We need a Good Grief emoji!
Trump is a Traitor and Mullins is his Acolyte says
Joe has to go! All good Republicans should order a vote by mail ballot or march down to the polls on primary day and see to it that Mullin’s time on the county commission, embarrassing the citizens of Flagler County comes to an end.
Going to guess the next story will be something happening at the Gaylord Rockies Resort that will be a negative for Flagler County. He should just step down.
Can we PLEASE go and vote him out?!?!
Jane Gentile-Youd says
Believe it or not I feel so guilty for NOT listening to my 2018 campaign manager former County Commissioner Hutch King who pleaded with me to play ‘dirty’ and let the world know what a POS Mullins was . I knew all abut and the lawsuits he had in Georgia, his distaste for renting to black Americans, his own kids on Medicaid ( we have the cards with their names half blacked out); his escapades while married to his first wife ..but I wanted to campaign ‘nice’. Hutch was so angry he quit my campaign and how sorry I am today, 4 years later that I did not listen to him. Maybe we all could have been spared the embarrassment and anger we in Flagler County are going through. Maybe, maybe not but I openly apologize to Hutch for not listening to him.
Maybe those 10,000 who chose him over his opponent ( me) might not have; we will never know. No I am not God’s perfect human being but I hold my head up very high in comparison to this POS, i.e. Joe Mullins who has done nothing in his 3.5 years other than to humiliate constituents on taxpayers dime and voting land deals for his personal attorney.
I am so sorry I didn’t campaign ‘dirty’4 years ago. Just maybe ,just maybe things would have turned out different.
Donald J Trump says
Based on his recent actions, I’m withdrawing my endorsement of this low life scumbag. You can’t keep lying to your subjects, take my word on this. You know it, I know it and everyone knows it!
Roy Longo says
To hell with this asshole. Vote Leann Pennington. She is the right person for the job. Lived here for 30 years. Level headed.
I am not a dem in any way , shape, or form. But this Ahole needs to go. He is an embarrasment even to our side.
Why would they invite him in the first place? Are these old guys that stupid? Who is your next speaker? Dennis McDonald? He owes the County well over 100k from phony lawsuits. We lost a really great Commissioner in Nate McLaughlin because Voters decided they wanted new blood and they elected Joe Mullins! How many here voted for Mullins?
Stop throwing the baby out with the bath water. Try researching your candidates for a change instead of asking your neighbor or Ed Danko who to vote for. Danko is busy telling anyone who will listen that these charges are bogus and that all this is fake news. Quite obviously, none of his Trump Club Members read or watch any news. This is how men like Mullins get into public office.
Stop blaming this County for your own mistakes. Elections have consequences and we are all living this one now. How about showing up at the next Commission meeting and asking for his removal?
Hey Blossum, has anyone seen the disgrace of the Mullins property in Ga. named after his daughter, called Clara Point. An apartment complex owned by Mullins. Public officials stateing no human being should be subject to such horrible conditions. Mullins has no soul or ethics. JOE GOTTA GO
This morning I went to lying Joe’s facebook page and posted a comment, saying that as a retired law enforcement officer how disgusted I was with him. After first seeing the multiple videos showing his utter contempt for law enforcement after getting pulled over for egregious and reckless driving behavior where his blatant attempts to try to get out of tickets which LEOs thankfully ignored, Mullins then made more blatant attempts to try to coerce judges and other court officials to dismiss the tickets to avoid accountability for his illegal behavior. Now he is lying to the public, posting on his FB page that he is a huge supporter of law enforcement and has received endorsements from multiple law enforcement organizations, which is just another blatant LIE! The audacity of this lying, deceitful and arrogant county commissioner is not something that the law enforcement community and the voters at large are likely to forgive. He is unfit for elected office, and he is very deserving of being trounced in the upcoming election and kicked to the curb by the people of Flagler County. We can doso much better, and the voters DESERVE a county commissioner that is truthful and ethical, which are traits this man is severely lacking.
Once again Mullin is showing Flagler County what a liar and con man act like. The rest of the Flagler County Commissioners haven’t said a word which is showing us taxpayers that they support this kind of behavior.
It is time for Flagler County to stop voting these characters into office. Mullin is a short little guy who tries to act like he is 10 feet tall and is the big chief around town and as we have witnessed it is a fake and a bull sh___phony.
Orange Man 2024 says
This guy lies more then Nancy Piglosi and the demoRATS ! No, that’s impossible.
Diane Cocchiola says
Bye, bye, lyin’ Joe. Your nose has already grown too big for your Ferarri.
Michael Van Buren says
What can I say, that hasn’t been said already. Joe needs to go!
Since he blew off all local obligations and flew off to a Colorado resort yesterday, he called into tonight’s Commission debate instead of being there as promised. Not a single apology was heard. This is just too much. Small wonder few decent candidates are willing to run here. They receive no support. The local public simply do not care. WhY should any credible candidate run here?
Reminds me of another narcissist the republicans elected.
Willy James says
Knowing Joe Mullins as well as I do, I am sure he will convince the National Association of Counties members at the meeting he is attending in Colorado that he has more political pull than governor Desantis of the State of Florida. If you think I’m full of it, just ask Joe! He’ll confirm that he is the most important politician in the state.
Mullins for Governor says
The great Will Rogers once quipped that “He never met a man he never liked.” Well, he never met Joe Mullins!
A completely self-serving and unapologetic liar…just like his great buddy, Donald Trump.