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Florida Gov. DeSantis warns those taking advantage of hurricane victims: ‘We are a law and order state’

florida-gov.-desantis-warns-those-taking-advantage-of-hurricane-victims:-‘we-are-a-law-and-order-state’

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a stern warning to those trying to take advantage of the victims of Hurricane Ian.

DeSantis made the comments Friday during a news conference in Fort Myers, Florida. He said that while visiting nearby Punta Gorda, he saw a boarded-up business with a sign that read, “You loot, we shoot.”

“We are a law and order state, and this is a law and order community,” DeSantis said. “So do not think that you’re going to take advantage of people who’ve suffered misery.”

“Don’t even think about looting,” he said during another press conference later in the day.

HURRICANE IAN IN FLORIDA SPURS FRANTIC MESSAGES ABOUT MISSING LOVED ONES AND WRECKED HOMES

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis gives an update on the damage from Hurricane Ian on Thursday.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis gives an update on the damage from Hurricane Ian on Thursday. (Florida Governor’s Office)

DeSantis added that people looking to “ransack people’s homes” should beware: Florida is a Second Amendment state.

“I can tell you in the state of Florida, you never know what may be lurking behind somebody’s home,” he said. “And I would not want to chance that if I were you — given that we’re a Second Amendment state.”

Ian made landfall in Florida on Wednesday, and nearly 2 million people remained without power as of Friday afternoon.

The hurricane made landfall as a powerful Category 4 storm, with maximum sustained winds reaching 155 mph. 

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno also said that he “will not tolerate” anyone trying to take advantage of people suffering as a result of the storm’s damage.

IAN DOWNGRADED TO POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE AS IT LASHES CAROLINAS; FLORIDA OFFICIALS REPORT MORE DEATHS

  • Flooding in Florida

    Flooding in central Florida from Hurricane Ian. (Orange County Sheriff’s Office)

  • Officers in floodwaters in Florida

    Orange County Sheriff’s Office help Florida residents in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. (Orange County Sheriff’s Office)

  • Sanibel Island, Florida pool submerged by Hurricane Ian

    Video captured by WFTX reporter Elyse Chengery showed a pool at a hotel on Sanibel Island, Florida, on Wednesday, before Hurricane Ian flooded it. (WFTX / Elyse Chengery)

  • Sanibel Island, Florida pool submerged by Hurricane Ian

    Video captured by WFTX reporter Elyse Chengery showed Hurricane Ian submerge a pool at a hotel on Sanibel Island, Florida, on Wednesday in less than an hour. (WFTX / Elyse Chengery)

  • Tampa Bay

    Sisters walk along the shore of a receded Tampa Bay as water was pulled out from the bay in advance of the arrival of Hurricane Ian on Wednesday in Tampa, Florida. ((Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images))

  • Trees and debris lay strewn across a Punta Gorda street as Hurricane Ian devastates Florida

    Debris litters a street in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian in Punta Gorda, Florida, on Thursday.  (Ricardo Arduengo /AFP via Getty Images)

“We are not going to tolerate, I mean, zero tolerance when we say anyone that thinks they’re going to thrive on the residents of this county or state when we just took a horrific hit — I can guarantee you that is not going to happen,” Marceno said.

He said there will be “swift incarceration immediately with no tolerance.”

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  • Wind gusts blow through palm trees in Florida during Hurricane Ian

    Wind gusts blow debris across the John Ringling Causeway as Hurricane Ian churns to the south on Wednesday in Sarasota, Florida.  (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

  • Wind gusts blow through palm trees forcing them to bend over highways as Hurricane Ian hits Florida

    Wind gusts blow across Sarasota Bay as Hurricane Ian churns to the south on Wednesday in Sarasota, Florida.   (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

  • Waves crash along the Ballast Point Pier ahead of Hurricane Ian

    Waves crash along the Ballast Point Pier ahead of Hurricane Ian on Wednesday in Tampa, Fla.  (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

  • Debris is littered across a Florida street during Hurricane Ian

    Debris litters a street in a neighborhood of St. Pete Beach as the winds from Hurricane Ian arrive on Wednesday in St. Petersburg, Florida.  (Gerardo Mora/Getty Images)

  • Hurricane Ian Aftermath Florida Damage

    A downed tree covers the road after being toppled by the winds and rain from Hurricane Ian on Wednesday in Sarasota, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

  • Flooding takes over a parking lot in Myers Beach, Florida during Hurricane Ian

    Rain falls over a parking lot at Fort Myers Beach ahead of Hurricane Ian in Fort Myers, Florida, on Wednesday. (Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

  • Water moves away from Tampa, Florida shore ahead of Hurricane Ian landfall

    A man walks near Ballast Point Pier as water moves away from shore as Hurricane Ian begins to move into the area on Wednesday in Tampa, Fla.  (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

Twenty-one deaths have been reported throughout Florida after Hurricane Ian went through the state, according to FOX 35, but officials say the number is expected to rise.

On Friday afternoon, Ian made landfall near Georgetown, South Carolina. The National Hurricane Center downgraded it to a post-tropical cyclone.

Adam Sabes is a writer for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to Adam.Sabes@fox.com and on Twitter @asabes10.

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