Armed Deputy Resigns After "Lingering Outside" During Parkland Shooting
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel claimed to have witnessed a deputy failing to "take up a position" when reviewing footage of the act of terror that was Feb. 14’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.
According to Reuters, Deputy Scot Peterson was the school’s assigned resource officer and the only armed official present when former-student, Nikolas Cruz, began to unload his AR-15-style assault rifle. Israel stated that Peterson never took action. The sheriff explained that even though Peterson arrived only 90 seconds after the first shot, the deputy "lingered" outside the building for a minimum of four minutes. Peterson was seen loitering for the duration of the shooting, freezing in an incident that claimed the lives of 17 students. The Parkland shooting ranks as the second deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.
While talking to the media, Israel said Peterson’s hesitation was an outlying action and one that's not aligned with the department’s policy. When asked what steps Peterson should've taken, Israel responded plainly, “Went in. Addressed the killer. Killed the killer.”
Although the deputy has not given a reason for why he didn’t enter the building, Peterson seems to have conceded to his false steps. With Israel announcing that Peterson would be subjected to suspension following an internal investigation, the deputy proved that this action was unnecessary and stepped down from his position on Thursday (Feb. 22).