WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Local veteran gets new dog tags instead of jail time

Play Audio

George Dawson graduated from Veterans Court Dec. 17. Dawson avoided jail time by going through the diversion program.

When local veteran George Dawson was arrested in 2013 for driving on a suspended license, he was homeless and struggling with addiction.

On Wednesday, Dawson graduated from Veterans Court, a jail diversion program that kept him out of prison and got him treatment.

Dawson got a new set of dog tags when he graduated.

“I’m proud of ‘em, I really am,” Dawson said. “I wished I still had my dog tags from when I was in service, but unfortunately I don’t. But I’m just as proud of these as well because I’m a vet and it’s from vets. I don’t know what tell you. I’m dumbfounded. I’m lost for words.

Dawson and two other veterans graduated from a program designed to keep them out of prison. Ninth Circuit Judge Jerry Brewer said ninety five percent of veterans who complete the program don’t get arrested again.

“A lot of it’s got to do with the fact that you’re vets,” Dawson said. “You had that training in your past and somebody just needed to ignite it again. And that marvelous group of people over there were able to do that. They just reminded you of what you were once upon a time.”

Dawson will speak at a conference next month on Veterans Court. Check here for a deeper look at the growing use of Veterans Courts in Florida.

Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida news, updates on special programs and more.

Stay tuned in to our local news coverage: Listen to 90.7 WMFE on your FM or HD radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” and you’ll be connected.

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »