Last week, I posted about the revelation that Deputy Scot Peterson, the school cop assigned to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, had stood around outside during the Parkland mass shooting. Rather than enter the school and attempt to help the children being murdered, Peterson hid behind a car in the parking lot.
In the days since then, that story has continued to grow and change and not in a positive way. As a matter of fact, just hours later leaks from the Coral Springs Police Department exposed that Peterson was not the only deputy who failed to enter the school and try to stop Nikolas Cruz. Three other (as yet unnamed) BCSO deputies also took cover outside as they listened to the sound of kids being killed.
In the latest revelation, it appears that those deputies were actually ordered not to enter the school. On February 27th, it was reported that sources “near the Broward County Sheriff’s Office” had indicated that the deputies were told not to enter the school without body cameras on. None of those deputies had body cams and therefore they did not go inside the building.
What sort of misguided reasoning was behind insisting they not enter the building without body cameras recording is not clear. Nor is the reason why they would have adhered to that even after it was determined that none of the cops present had a body cam. It is, however, very clear at this point that none of the four Broward County Sheriff’s Deputies so much as attempted to confront the shooter until after officers from the Coral Springs Police Department arrived.
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BREAKING: Broward County Sheriff Deputies were reportedly told NOT to enter the school during the shooting unless they had body cameras on, which they did not have.
Police also reportedly lost radio transmissions during the shooting. pic.twitter.com/NUYQZkONSW
— Ryan Saavedra 🇺🇸 (@RealSaavedra) February 27, 2018
Sheriff Israel was already facing heavy criticism for Deputy Peterson’s lack of action. Shortly after it was made known that other deputies had also hid outside during the shooting, demands for his resignation began. This new information that those deputies were under orders not to enter the school could very well be the final straw.
Israel will have a hard time trying to convince anyone that the deputies’ behavior was “not my responsibility” That’s a pretty hard sell when that behavior was actually based upon orders issued by him. It’s no longer one cowardly officer shirking his responsibility, it’s a department policy at that point.
And it doesn’t just end at ordering the deputies themselves to wait. Another leaked story indicates that the Broward County Sheriff’s Deputies at the scene prevented EMS workers and other medical professionals from approaching the school in order to treat the injured. There is now speculation that some of those who were killed could have survived if they had received that medical treatment sooner.
It’s very much true that general procedure for the police is not to allow fire/medical personnel to enter until a scene has been cleared. However, even that doesn’t belie all of the criticism of Sheriff Israel. One still has to ask just how long medical treatment was delayed because those deputies (under the sheriff’s orders) failed to enter the school and clear it when they arrived.
For how long did the paramedics stand outside offering to risk their own lives in order to treat the children while Nikolas Cruz was already on his way to hangout inside a Walmart? And how many more children would have survived if those deputies had gone in and secured that school?
Sheriff Israel: Behavior of Deputies “Not My Responsibility”
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel refusing to resign telling @nbc6: “I gave him a gun. I gave him a badge. I gave him the training. If he didn’t have the heart to go in, that’s not my responsibility.” Clip from our one-on-one interview below. #DouglasHighSchool pic.twitter.com/FV5Gn0ZEBY
— Erika Glover 🎥 (@ErikaGloverNBC6) February 25, 2018
In last week’s press conference, in which Sheriff Israel put on a show of being outraged by Deputy Peterson’s inaction, two things stood out as odd almost immediately. One was the way Israel went out of his way to declare that the security footage which exposed Peterson would likely “never be released to the public.” Another was that there were no recording of the radio communications available for that day.
The first mystery was likely solved by the revelation that not just one, but four armed deputies would have been seen heroically defending the parking lot on that video as defenseless children were shot. The reason for the “malfunctioning” radio connection may be because Sheriff Israel didn’t want people hearing that he had ordered them to do so.
Broward County Sheriff’s Office Press Conference
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Kelly is a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, who’s been very active in local grassroots activism, as well as on a national level during his extensive travels. He’s also the founder/main contributor of Nevada Cop Block, served as editor/contributor at CopBlock.org and designed the Official Cop Block Press Passes.
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Cowards take a coward’s advice then the coward who gave advice calls the other cowards out and throws them under the bus…I’d ask why his department doesn’t quit, but see the word “cowards”.
I’d be a cop…but I’m sure to fail the intelligence portion by showing up to the right building on time and not killing unarmed people.