A judge ruled on Monday, March 12, 2018, that the Broward County Sheriff had to release video from the deadly school shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School school on Feb. 14, 2018. The decision came after media outlets took the department to court when the sheriff refused to release the video to the public.
The video was released on Thursday, March 15.
The video shows what was happening outside the building in the early moments of the shooter’s rampage. School Resource officer Scot Peterson has resigned his position after the video evidence and reports caused an internal review of his conduct during the shooting.
The Broward County Sheriff’s office released a statement:
“The video speaks for itself,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement that accompanied the release of the video. “His actions were enough to warrant an internal affairs investigation, as requested by Sheriff Scott Israel on Feb. 21. After being suspended without pay, Peterson chose to resign and immediately retired rather than face possible termination.”
The Sun-Sentinal reports:
The video released Thursday starts less than a minute after the Broward Sheriff’s Office said Cruz entered the school and began shooting.
As Peterson is seen running to a golf cart, the first 911 call about the shooting is made to Coral Springs police, according to a Sheriff’s Office timeline.
It appears to show people, whose identities are blurred, coming out of a building. At the time, according to the agency’s timeline, Peterson over his police radio said: “Be advised we have possible, could be firecrackers, I think we have shots fired, possible shots fired – 1200 building.”
Cruz was inside the building for more than three minutes before getting rid of his gun and fleeing, the Sheriff’s Office said. He was arrested over an hour later.
Through his lawyer, Peterson released a statement last week saying that he initially thought the shooter was outside, saying that’s why he didn’t enter the building. But Peterson’s own radio transmissions suggest he had focused on the 1200 building, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement, at the request of Gov. Rick Scott, has opened an investigation into the law enforcement response to the shooting.
The shooter, Nikolas Cruz, killed 17 students and staff before throwing his gun and blending in with terrified students exiting the building. He was later caught and arrested. He has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder. Prosecutors have said they will seek the death penalty.