He stated in the official statement he released that believed the shots were from outside the building. This report suggests that’s wrong and he knew otherwise.
Via Miami Herald:
Roundly vilified for not entering a Parkland high school during a mass shooting, Broward Deputy Scot Peterson insisted publicly that he believed that gunfire was happening outside on campus — not from inside the building.
But internal radio dispatches released by the sheriff’s office Thursday show Peterson immediately fixated on Building 12 and even radioed that gunfire was happening “inside.”
And, just as school shooter Nikolas Cruz was fleeing the building after killing 17 people, Peterson warned his fellow officers to stay away — even as wounded students and staff lay inside.
BSO policy calls for deputies to engage an active shooter and eliminate the threat.
“Do not approach the 12 or 1300 building, stay at least 500 feet away,” Peterson said over the radio, according to the records released Thursday.
The second-by-second timeline and audio recording of police radio chatter sheds new light on the chaotic and much scrutinized law-enforcement response to the bloodshed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High on Feb. 14, the state’s worst school shooting.
The records appear to support Broward Sheriff Scott Israel’s contention that Peterson, a longtime school-resource officer, should have entered Building 12 to engage Cruz and try to prevent deaths. They also appear to show that other deputies may have refrained from rushing into the school at Peterson’s direction. The response by his agency has been the subject of national scrutiny, and is currently under review by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Jeff Bell, the president of BSO’s police union, welcomed the release of the audio and timeline
“It certainly backs up that he never went into the school,” Bell said of Peterson. “At one point he says to keep back 500 feet. Why would he say that?”