Armed Officer Never Went In During Parkland Shooting, Now Getting More Protection Than Schoolkids

Did you hear about this one?

(Miami Herald) Eight days after mass shooter Nikolas Cruz murdered 17 people inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Broward’s top cop on Thursday revealed a stunning series of failures by the sheriff’s department.

A school campus cop heard the gunfire, rushed to the building but never went inside — instead waiting outside for another four agonizing minutes as Cruz continued the slaughter.

And long before Cruz embarked on the worst school shooting in Florida history, Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies had multiple warnings that the 19-year-old was a violent threat and a potential school shooter, according to records released Thursday.

In November, a tipster called BSO to say Cruz “could be a school shooter in the making” but deputies did not write up a report on that warning. It came just weeks after a relative called urging BSO to seize his weapons. Two years ago, according to a newly released timeline of interactions with Cruz’s family, a deputy investigated a report that Cruz “planned to shoot up the school” — intelligence that was forwarded to the school’s resource officer, with no apparent result.

The school’s resource officer, Scot Peterson, 54, was suspended without pay then immediately resigned and retired. Two other deputies have been placed on restricted duty while Internal Affairs investigates how they handled the two shooter warnings. (snip)

Peterson — named school resource officer of the year for Parkland in 2014 — was in another building, dealing with a student issue when the shots sounded. Armed with his sidearm, Peterson ran to the west side of Building 12 and set up in a defensive position, then did nothing for four minutes until the gunfire stopped, the sheriff said.

On Thursday, Israel said surveillance footage captured the officer’s inaction. Asked what Peterson should have done, Israel said: “Went in. Addressed the killer. Killed the killer.”

And then there’s this

(Business Leader) Deputies from the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office are guarding the home of the school resource officer who was stationed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after his family requested the protection, according to multiple news reports on Thursday.

Local Fox affiliate WSVN said it sent a reporter to the Boynton Beach, Florida, home of Broward County Sheriff’s deputy Scot Peterson for an interview when the reporter was met with six deputies “standing guard outside.”

One man gets six armed law enforcement officers. An entire school gets one. Who failed to act as gunfire rang out in the school.

As far as arming teachers, here’s an idea. First, allow retired military members and police officers who have experience with guns to serve as protection officers. I bet there are plenty of granddads who would be up for it. Second, allow teachers to be armed if they choose. They’d have to go through a background check and a firearms safety course, as well as be trained in the use of the gun.

Stress to teachers that they do not even have to load the weapon if they are uncomfortable (bear with me a minute, I know what you’re thinking). Allow them to carry one of those fake pistols that look utterly realistic. Some will open carry, some will concealed carry. The point here is not to shoot someone, but to deter a wacko from coming to the school looking for an easy murder spree. This would apply to all schools, all the way up through colleges. Deterrence.

If you’re banning guns, you’re taking them away from the law abiding. Criminals will still have theirs. Let’s allow schools to have the same protection the failed officer is getting.

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14 Responses to “Armed Officer Never Went In During Parkland Shooting, Now Getting More Protection Than Schoolkids”

  1. Jeffery says:

    But tRump said Armed personnel would dissuade the Mass Shooters from even entering. Not so much.

    In any event, the Armed Guard was most likely outgunned anyway. The murderer had an AR-15 style weapon.

    • 7alanstorm says:

      Jeffty, you know less about this subject than about the climate, and that’s saying a lot.

      The point of arming teachers (note the plural usage) is that the potential leftist shooter does not know who might be armed, creating uncertainty. A single, known “resource officer”? Easy to avoid and plan for.

      Keep trying, though – one day you might know enough to make an intelligent comment! Maybe.

      • Jeffery says:

        Oh storrrrrmie,

        Most of the school shooters are suicidal anyway. The fact is that the FL murderer knew there was armed guard and attacked anyway.

        Leftist shooter? Do you mean a right-wing, racist, anti-Semitic, MAGA hat wearing, ammosexual shooting children? The FL POS touched all the bases for being a crazy Con Man.

        Keep trying, though – one day you might make something other than the dumbest comment of the day! Maybe.

        • gitarcarver says:

          The fact is that the FL murderer knew there was armed guard and attacked anyway.

          There is no evidence that the shooter knew there was an armed guard in the building that he attacked.

          In fact, the SRO was away from the building on somewhere else on the 45 acre campus.

          Furthermore, CNN is now reporting that not only did that BCSO not enter the building, but three other BCSO’s were outside as well.

          We get it Jeffery. You hate kids so much that you don’t care if they are murdered. You have spent post after post trying to justify the shooting, attacking others and blaming the whole thing on others. You hate people so much that you think people shouldn’t have the right to defend themselves.

          That’s the depth of your hatred that you are willing to dance on the graves of those you hated and wouldn’t allow them to defend themselves.

          Don’t worry though. You can still hate people and exhibit that hatred by defending the lying illegal immigrant that sexually assaulted a teenager.

          All you have is hatred.

          • Jeffery says:

            We get it, gitar. You hate children so much you want to see them killed by crazed right-wing gunmen. We understand your ideological bent, making your life easier. No decisions to make. No gray areas. It’s every American’s right to have whatever weapon they want, whenever they want it. Why not arm all the kids. The 2nd Amendment doesn’t limit that, does it?

            There is absolutely no reason to think a few teachers with pistols will stop a suicidal right-winger intent on killing children.

            So by your own admission, four trained, armed officers couldn’t stop this right-wing crazy, and you expect a French teacher with a sidearm in her desk to save lives?? Are you daft? Are you blinded by your ideology? Are you Wayne LaPeter?

            You are willing to continue sacrificing innocent children on your ideological altar.

            All you have is hatred. And ignorance. You have hatred and ignorance. And mental illness. You have hatred, ignorance and mental illness.

            You have become increasingly unhinged.

    • formwiz says:

      The guard hid, genius.

      An armed teracher would be on the scene. In the line of fire. Shoot or die.

    • Joe Mama says:

      “Texas police shooting: Overmatched officer stops two with assault rifles”

      Nice try, you fail.

  2. Some Hillbilly in St Louis says:

    The courts have affirmed since 1981 that police officers have no duty to protect the citizenry. Police are there to write a report afterwards, semi-randomly tax the foolish/unwary, and to defend criminals from citizens.

  3. Conservative Beaner says:

    The Officer did not even need to engage the suspect. All he had to do is announce he was in the building or light off a round to let the shooter know another player was about to engage in the fight. Little Bastard may have shit his pants and left the building.

    • Jeffery says:

      Nonsense. Absolute nonsense. These killers don’t care if there are officers around. They are suicidal. Why schools? That’s where kids are, that’s where terrorists have the most impact.

      Arming teachers is a stupid idea. By all means increase the armed guards. Limit access to the buildings. But guns for teachers is stupid. Nationwide there will be more accidents and students taking the guns from teachers than any possible stopping of a killer with an AR-15 style NRA rifle.

  4. Dana says:

    In 2012-13, there were 209,800 teachers assaulted by students. If just 2% of those teachers had been armed, and just 2% of those armed teachers were overpowered by an angry student who then seized the teacher’s weapon, that would leave 84 incidents a year in which an enraged student then had a firearm inside the school.

    To me, the odds of that happening are greater than the odds that an armed teacher would take out an assailant like Nikolas de Jesus Cruz. So, no, I don’t support arming teachers.

    Deputy Peterson was a 32 year veteran of the Broward County Sheriff’s Department, and, one must assume, that he had many hours of training in dealing with such situations. Yet none of his training actually put his life in jeopardy; what his training did not reveal is that, when the bullets started flying for real, he was simply unable to respond. Expecting an armed high school French teacher to respond appropriately is a stretch.

    It doesn’t matter how brave you think you are, it doesn’t matter what training you have received, until that moment comes when you are actually faced with being under fire, you cannot know how you would respond. Yeah, I like to think that I’m strong and brave, and that I’d have advanced in and taken out Mr Cruz, but the fact is that I have never faced that situation, and the possibility exists that I’d have cowered in fear as did Deputy Peterson.

    • gitarcarver says:

      In 2012-13, there were 209,800 teachers assaulted by students.

      The data that you cite is from 2010 – 2011 school year and is not based on reported incidents but a survey in which the definition of “assault” was “an actual and intentional touching or striking of another person against his or her will, or the intentional causing of bodily harm to an individual.” The problem with the point that you are trying to make is that teachers are prohibited from striking a student. In other words, if one can attack a teacher and not risk the same consequences of the teacher coming back at them, there doesn’t seem to be much deterrent.

      In other words, the teachers in assault cases are disarmed because of the “don’t defend yourself” policies that were enacted and according to the survey, the number of assaults went up. No deterrent means results in an increase of attacks, not a decrease.

      The data for school shootings shows an increase after the passage of the Gun Free Zone Act:

      Prior to Gun Free Zone Act:

      •During the first decade of the 20th century there were 15 (1903 (2 shootings), 04 (3), 05 (2), 07 (2), 08 (2), 09 (4).

      •During the 1910s there were 19 (1910 (3 shootings), 1911, 12 (2), 14, 15 (2), 16 (2), 17 (2), 18 (2), 19 (3).

      •During the 1920s there were 10 (1920 (7 shootings), 22 (2), 26).

      •During the 1930s there were 9 (1930, 31, 34, 35, 36 (2), 37 (2), 38).

      •During the 1940s there were 8 (1940 (2 shootings), 42, 46, 47, 48, 49 (2)).

      •During the 1950s there were 17 (1950, 51 (4), 52 (2), 53, 54 (2), 55, 56 (2), 57, 58 (2), 59).

      •During the 1960s there were 18 (1960 (3 shootings), 61 (2), 66 (4), 67, 68 (4), 69 (4)).

      •During the 1970s there were 30 (1970 (5 shootings), 71 (2), 73 (2), 74 (4), 75 (3), 76 (3), 77, 78 (7), 79 (3)).

      •During the 1980s there were 39 (1980 (4 shootings), 81 (3), 82 (3), 83, 84 (4), 85 (5), 86 (5), 87 (5), 88 (6), 89 (3)).

      After the Gun-Free Zone Act:

      •During the 1990s there were 63 (1990 (2 shootings), 91 (6), 92 (7), 93 (10), 94 (10), 95 (4), 96 (7), 97 (6), 98 (7), 99 (6)).

      •During the 1st decade there were 60 (2000 (5 shootings), 01 (5), 02 (7), 03 (4), 05 (5), 06 (11), 07 (5), 08 (11), 09 (7))

      •During the 2010s (as of 14 February 2018) the total number is 146 shootings (2010 (11 shootings), 11 (7), 12 (11), 13 (26), 14 (36), 15 (21), 16 (15), 17 (9), 18 (10)).

      As for arming teachers:

      In December 2007, two church members were shot to death and three others injured after a gunman opened fire outside the New Life Church in Colorado Springs as Sunday services were wrapping up.

      That tragedy could have been much worse, but the gunman was shot by a church security officer and was found dead when police arrived at the scene.

      On April 22 of this year a just-released felon went to the New Destiny Christian Church in Aurora, Colo., and killed the mother of Pastor Delano Strahan before being killed himself by a congregant carrying a gun.


      Few Americans are aware that in an October 1997 shooting spree at a Pearl, Miss., high school that left two students dead, assistant principal Joel Myrick retrieved a gun from his car and immobilized the shooter until police arrived, preventing further killings.

      Or, in another school shooting in January 2002 at the Appalachian School of Law in Virginia, a disgruntled former student killed Law Dean L. Anthony Sutin, associate professor Thomas Blackwell and a student. Two of the three Virginia law students who overpowered the gunman were armed, preventing further deaths.

      In February 2007, at a Salt Lake City mall, armed off-duty police officer Ken Hammond killed a young Muslim named Sulejman Talovic after he had killed five people, preventing an even larger massacre.

      In the above incidents, the gunman was stopped not by people putting themselves between the shooter and victims, but the willingness and ability to fight back.

      As for the officer who chose not to enter the school, he was initially elsewhere on the campus when the shooting started. That gives credence to the old adage that “when seconds count, the police are minutes away.”

      And while you raise a good point that the shooter may have been aware that there was a resource officer on campus, the shooter also may have been aware of the officer’s movements and location of the officer’s car not being there meaning the officer wasn’t there. However, if guns can’t stop a shooter like this one, why are cops armed? Why was the school resource officer armed?

      Do you think that if the SRO was in the building – just coming down the hallway – when the shooting started and pulled his weapon that the shooter would continued to focus on the other students or the threat that the armed SRO posed to him? Even if the shooter’s attention was diverted for 10 seconds, that’s ten seconds where the shooting isn’t firing at unarmed people while more police are hopefully on the way.

      We can debate all day long whether teachers should be armed, but the fact of the matter is that the state never should be able to take the right of a person to defend themselves. That’s what gun free zones do.

      The law violates the most basic and fundamental foundation of this country – the right of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

  5. Dana says:

    Mr Cruz has previously been a ‘student’ at Douglas High School; he had to have known that there was an armed security officer there, but he had no way of knowing that Mr Peterson would fail to engage. The known presence of an armed defender did not deter Mr Cruz from assaulting the school.

    Deterrence is the art of producing in the mind of the enemy the fear to attack. — Dr Strangelove

    Deterrence is based, in the end, on the rationality of the deterred. Mr Cruz was not rational! Whatever his grievances, it could never be a logical decision for him to attack the school; the only possible outcomes would be that he would be killed, or that he’d spend the rest of his life in prison. The presence of armed guards should deter the rational, but if someone is deranged enough to want to make such an assault in the first place, the presence of armed guards is an obstacle to be overcome, not a true deterrent. That Mr Cruz didn’t attempt to take out the guard first simply means he was even more deranged than we might have thought.

  6. Dana says:

    Our esteemed host wrote:

    One man gets six armed law enforcement officers. An entire school gets one.

    True enough. It is also true that Mr Peterson is far more likely to be facing a threat than the school.

    There will be no justice here. Mr Peterson, who is only 54 years old, will take his taxpayer-paid pension and flee the state, doubtlessly changing his name and trying to live out the rest of his life in anonymity. The only punishment he will face is having to live with his conscience; if we should happen to read one day that he committed suicide, I would not be surprised.

    I am very glad that Mr Peterson is under guard. It is better that he be guarded than lynched by angry citizens. Oh, he would certainly deserve that mob justice, but I don’t want to see any of the law-abiding citizens of Parkland on trial for killing him.

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