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Florida school shooting: Armed officer failed to confront gunman

Florida school shooting: Armed officer failed to confront gunman
By Euronews
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Sheriff's deputy Scot Peterson, who was assigned to the school where 17 people were shot dead, has now resigned after being suspended


The armed sheriff's deputy assigned to the Florida high school where 17 people were shot dead has resigned rather than face suspension after an internal investigation showed he failed to enter the school to confront the gunman during the attack, the county sheriff has said.

Deputy Scot Peterson, who was on duty and in uniform as the resource officer posted at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was the only law enforcement officer present on Feb. 14 when the rampage started, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said.

Peterson's actions were caught on video during the massacre.

Asked at a news conference on Thursday what the deputy should have done, Sheriff Israel said:

"Went in. Addressed the killer. Killed the killer."

Peterson has not given a reason for why he did not enter the building, Israel said.

Nikolas Cruz, a 19-year-old former student, was later arrested and charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder in the assault.

President Donald Trump has doubled down on arming teachers.

The National Rifle Association agrees that more guns need to be in schools.

On Thursday, the body's CEO Wayne LaPierre, lashed out at gun control advocates, accusing liberal elites of politicising the Florida mass shooting to try to attack "our firearms freedoms so they can eradicate all individual freedoms".

However Melissa Falkowski, who hid 19 students from the Parkland gunman in her classroom, says more weapons in school are not the answer.

"We should never be asked to act as police officers or act as trained military personnel," she said.

Trump is also pledging other action, talking about tougher background checks, mental health screening, a ban on bump stocks and raising the age of buying a gun from 18 to 21.

The carnage has also raised questions about whether law enforcement agencies did all they could to detect and follow up on possible warning signs of last week's gun violence.

with Reuters

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