Former lawmaker, state Supreme Court justice dies

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TAMPA, Fla. - Fred Karl -- a former Florida lawmaker and Supreme Court justice who went on to become a power player in Hillsborough County politics -- has died. He was 88.

Karl's daughter Tami confirmed that he passed away at his Tampa home Thursday.

Karl was born in Daytona Beach and was a decorated World War II veteran. He attended Stetson University's law school. He then served in the Florida House and was a state senator from the late 1950s-early 1970s before briefly sitting as a state Supreme Court justice.

He was Florida's first public counsel and represented consumers against public utilities. Karl also was the Hillsborough County attorney and county administrator and once ran Tampa General Hospital. He is survived by his wife, five daughters, two sons, 15 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

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