Multiple Broward County Sheriff’s deputies did not enter the school during a high school shooting in Parkland, Fla., last week, according to CNN sources on Friday.
CNN reported that when the nearby Coral Springs police department officers arrived on the scene, three sheriff’s deputies from the school county were standing behind their vehicles with their pistols drawn, but had not yet gone into the school.
If confirmed, that raises the number of Broward County police officers on the scene who did not enter the active shooting situation to four, following a report that Scot Peterson was present but did not enter the building when the shooting occurred.
Peterson, a sheriff’s deputy and the armed resource officer at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was suspended Thursday and subsequently resigned.
CNN reported that the Coral Springs officers responding to the scene entered the school soon after arriving and were joined by two newly-arrived Broward County sheriff’s deputies and an officer from Sunrise, Fla.
A report will soon be released on the law enforcement response to the shooting, which left 17 people dead and 14 injured, although the official account could differ from what officers say they saw.
Coral Springs City Manager Mike Goodrum reportedly brought the episode up with Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel at a Feb. 15 vigil for the victims of the shooting, at which Goodrum told Israel that he was upset that the deputies had stayed outside the school until Coral Springs police arrived.
Goodrum acknowledged to CNN that he and Israel shared a “heated moment,” but said that their offices have a “good working relationship.”
“Given the horrific events of that day emotions were running high and the sheriff and I had a heated moment the following evening,” he said. “Sheriff Israel and I have spoken several times since and I can assure you that our departments have a good working relationship and the utmost respect for each other.”
The Coral Springs police department said it does not have an official comment on the report at this time, calling it “still an open and active investigation.”
“Our police department has continued to work alongside the Broward Sheriff’s Office to assist in any investigation pertaining to this incident,” the department told CNN. “The Coral Springs Police Department has a tremendous working relationship with the men and women of the Broward Sheriff’s Office, and while we are being transparent through this investigation, everyone should respect the process. There were countless deputies and officers who responded on that fateful day from multiple jurisdictions, whose actions were nothing short of heroic. As already reported, any actions or inactions that negatively affected the response will be investigated thoroughly, and the information will be released officially from the proper agency spokesperson.”