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Head of Florida prison system resigns under pressure

State Corrections Secretary James Crosby was ousted Friday by Gov. Jeb Bush following months of questions about illegal activities by guards and top officials in the prison system.

Crosby, a former warden at Florida State Prison, had headed the nation’s third largest corrections system since January of 2003.

In recent months, the department had been under intense scrutiny in the
face of arrests for steroid abuse and accusations of sexual assault,
and the arrest of an employee allegedly hired only to help a Florida
prison softball team.

Bush had expressed confidence in Crosby’s leadership in recent months
and didn’t elaborate in a brief statement released Friday on his
reasons for demanding that Crosby quit.

Bush named James McDonough as interim secretary. McDonough has served as the director of Bush’s Drug Control office since 1999.

Crosby had worked his way up through the prison system, starting in 1975.