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Former elected official gets pretrial diversion in burglary case

A former member of the Alachua County Soil and Water Conservation Board agreed to a pretrial diversion Wednesday morning. 

Daniel “Danny” Gordon, 41, held the District Four seat on the board and was charged with felony burglary and misdemeanor larceny in September. He was caught on surveillance video in July burglarizing his former home, according to court records.

He admitted to the charges in an affidavit. As part of the diversion agreement, he has to pay back the woman he burglarized, complete 50 hours of community service and can't possess firearms, among other conditions. 

The prosecution will be deferred for a year and a half. After, the state attorney will make a decision whether to continue.

The daughter of the woman who reported the home was burglarized published photos from the surveillance camera on a Facebook community page asking for help identifying the man in the images. 

The man had long hair and a beard, which matched Gordon’s booking photo at the Alachua County Jail from when he was arrested in August. 

He denied stealing anything, but said it was him in the video. He had several drinks and wasn’t doing well on that day, he said. 

In October, he was arrested after police said he carved a gay slur into a Volkswagen SUV parked across the street from the home he admitted burglarizing, leaving about $970 worth of damage. 

He was also caught on a surveillance camera, which he later stole. He was charged with misdemeanor damage to property, but it was later dropped.

Despite the pre-trial diversion, The Florida Bar has Gordon as a member in good standing, but can discipline attorneys or ban them from practicing if they are convicted of serious crimes.

After Gordon was charged, he wasn’t suspended from the board because it wasn’t brought to the governor’s attention, said John Chamberlain, the previous chairperson. Gordon continued to serve the rest of his term before being defeated by Walt Boyer in the November election.

Gordon did not make himself available for an interview.

Alexa is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.