Deerfield-News.com-Deerfield Beach, Fl-BREAKING NEWS-UPDATED-10.50 Pm-Sources, Miami Herald and Sun-Sentinel have confirmed Sheriff Scott Israel told staff today he will be suspended. It appears he has told his staff sources in Tallahassee told him he will be suspended by Governor DeSantis. Israel apparently told the upper echelon of BSO that as a result of the report and BSO’s response to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting he would be suspended. Fox News is reporting differently, that they have confirmed from Governor DeSantis office the Sheriff had not been suspended.
The report released by the commision contained many damning points including- that a recent shift in policy by Broward Sheriff Scott Israel, telling deputies that they “may” enter a building where there is an active shooter, where previously they were trained to enter, created confusion and led to inaction by eight deputies responding to the active shooter. The Sheriffs Office just changed back that language last week as we reported to “shall enter”, seems too little too late for Florida’s new Governor.
The Commission also found fault with the FBI for its failure to follow up on tips regarding Cruz and the danger he posed to students and faculty months before the attack.
Israel was elected sheriff in 2012, running against incumbent Al Lamberti and reelected in 2016. He is known for being outspoken regarding gun violence and gun control and opposes open carry. In 2016, Israel began to implement a plan for deputies to have body cameras. In 2017, his office was criticized for failing to take control in the aftermath of the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting. According to a report issued by the Sheriff’s Office, the failure was caused both by leadership issues and problems with communication systems. Sheriff became even more controversial during a CNN interview with Jake Tapper where many of his own supporters became disappointed with lack of acceptance of responsibility for failed leadership.
In the aftermath of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, Israel came under scrutiny for both for the actions of his deputies and his department’s failure to act on warning signs about shooter Nikolas Cruz. On the day of the shooting, an armed sheriff’s deputy was outside of the school but did not enter. Afterward, Israel criticized the deputy, saying that he should have “went in, addressed the killer, killed the killer”. It was later discovered that there may have been at least two other deputies, that arrived later, who also did not enter the building. Coral Springs police officers who arrived at the scene were surprised to find that the deputies still had not entered the building. According to Israel, his agency had “been involved in 23 type calls involving the killer in some way, shape or form — or his brother.” However, through a FOIA request, CNN found that the sheriff’s department had actually received 45 such calls about Cruz or his brother over the past decade. Israel has rejected calls for his resignation, including one from State representative Bill Hager. The Sun-Sentinel a long time Israel supporter and advocate also changed their position recently in a scathing editorial seeking his resignation.