Former Broward County Sheriff's Deputy Scot Peterson arrested

Friday, 07 Jun, 2019

"Peterson failed in his duty to protect lives that day, standing behind a cement pillar for 48 minutes while students and teachers were slaughtered", he said.

BSO spokeswoman Veda Coleman-Wright said Peterson was arrested Tuesday on multiple felony and misdemeanor charges.

Lori Alhadeff's 14-year-old daughter, Alyssa Alhadeff, was killed in the shooting. "I know that every other law enforcement officer from FDLE, from all across the state, cares about doing the right thing, and they've proved it today".

"What concerns me ... is we are setting a risky precedent by coming after law enforcement", he said. "I think that every police officer, sheriff, and Federal Bureau of Investigation agent understands that you have to go to the threat and stop it and that we are no longer going to wait for SWAT or set up perimeters".

Seventeen students and staffers were killed and 17 were wounded.

Peterson was the school resource officer seen on surveillance video, who was widely criticized for not immediately entering the school after shots rang out on campus.

Broward Judge Jackie Powell ruled Wednesday that Scot Peterson must first surrender the passport, which is now at his home in North Carolina, before being released on a bond set at $102,000. Under the terms of his release, Peterson would be required to wear a Global Positioning System monitor, must surrender his passport and would be banned from possessing any firearms. He called the charges "a thinly veiled attempt at politically motivated retribution".

Jeff Bell, president of the Broward Sheriff's Office Deputies Association, said that while the law enforcement community was upset with how Mr Peterson handled the incident and the harm to its reputation, his failure to act was not criminal.

"Mr. Peterson can not reasonably be prosecuted because he was not a 'caregiver, ' which is defined as a parent, adult household member or other person responsible for a child's welfare", DiRuzzo said.

It also says the gunman fired approximately 75 times after Peterson arrived. That typically occurs the day after an arrest.

"Had this individual done his job, lives would have been saved", said U.S. Senator Rick Scott, who was governor of Florida when the shooting happened.

After the shooting, Peterson took retirement rather than accept a suspension.

Officials determined that Peterson, along with Sergeant Brian Miller, "neglected their duties", and both were terminated Tuesday.

Tony Montalto, whose 14-year-old daughter Gina Montalto was one of the victims, said families wanted justice to be done.

The negligence charge brought by prosecutors accuses Peterson of "reckless indifference" or "careless disregard" for others. "We believe now that FDLE took the time and conducted 184 witness interviews and prepared statements and came to the same conclusion that this was the intentional inaction of Scot Peterson that caused those injuries to adults and children".

The arrest comes after a 15 month investigation into the law enforcement response to the shooting in Parkland.

After disgraced Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel was removed from his command, new Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony turned his focus to the internal investigation of how seven deputies responded to the tragedy.