GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Ben Overton, who served on the high court for a quarter-century including several years as chief justice, has died. He was 86.
The Florida Supreme Court says in a news release that Overton died Saturday of complications from heart surgery in Gainesville.
Chief Justice Ricky Polston says Overton will be remembered as an influential justice who helped promote accessibility through efforts to have cameras allowed in state court rooms.
Overton was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1974 and retired in 1999, authoring more than 1,400 decisions. He served as chief justice from 1976 to 1978.
The Wisconsin native attended the University of Florida as an undergraduate and also received his law degree there.
He also served 10 years on the Pinellas County Circuit Court.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)