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Florida sheriff's office releases surveillance video from school shooting

17 March 2018

Video released Thursday from Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida shows a sheriff's deputy remaining outside as a gunman murdered 17 students and staff inside.

The Broward County State Attorney's Office announced Tuesday that it would seek the death penalty for the 19-year-old man who fatally shot 14 students and three staff members February 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. The police force said the footage justifies action against Deputy Scot Peterson.

Though the 32-year veteran deputy has won awards for his record, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said after he watched Peterson in the video, he was "devastated". President Donald Trump has called Peterson a "coward" for not entering the building. He said the question is why he didn't: was it because of Peterson's individual character or something about the culture in the Broward Sheriff's Office that made him avoid a deadly force situation?

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The judge agreed with news outlets, including CBS4, that the video should be released citing strong public interest.

Nikolas Cruz was charged with 17 counts of first degree premeditated murder and 17 counts of first degree attempted murder. Other officers show up, though it is not clear from the video whether they are BSO or Coral Springs officers, and students are eventually led out of the building.

The release of the footage comes one day after National Walkout Day, where survivors of the shooting and students nationwide walked out of their classrooms to send a message something needs to change when it comes to school safety and gun laws.

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Prosecutors initially declined to say whether they would accept Finkelstein's offer, though Michael J. Satz, the state attorney for Broward County, gave a considerable hint days after the massacre by saying it was "the type of case the death penalty was designed for". It took officers 11 minutes to finally enter the building from the time the shooting was first reported.

The footage does not show Cruz, who shot up the inside of the school for about six minutes. Video of what happened inside the school is not being released.

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Florida sheriff's office releases surveillance video from school shooting