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Parkland deputy charged with negligence

by Lynde Langdon
Posted 6/04/19, 04:33 pm

Prosecutors on Tuesday charged a former sheriff’s deputy with 11 crimes for failing to confront a gunman during last year’s school shooting in Parkland, Fla. Broward County State Attorney Mike Satz said 56-year-old Scot Peterson faces child neglect, culpable negligence, and perjury charges that carry a combined potential prison sentence of nearly 100 years. The charges follow a 14-month investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). Peterson was on duty as the school resource officer during the massacre on Feb. 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland but never went inside while bullets were flying. Seventeen people died and 17 others were wounded in the attack.

“The FDLE investigation shows former deputy Peterson did absolutely nothing to mitigate the [Stoneman Douglas] shooting that killed 17 children, teachers and staff and injured 17 others,” FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen said. “There can be no excuse for his complete inaction and no question that his inaction cost lives.”

Peterson’s bail was set at $102,000, Satz said. Suspected shooter Nikolas Cruz, 20, faces the death penalty if convicted of the first-degree murder charges filed in the attack. His lawyers have said Cruz would plead guilty in return for a life sentence, but prosecutors have refused that offer.


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Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital’s managing editor and reports on popular and fine arts. She lives in Wichita, Kan., with her husband and two daughters. Follow Lynde on Twitter @lmlangdon.

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