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A former Broward County Sheriff's deputy was arrested Tuesday for "his complete inaction" during the 2018 Parkland school shooting.
The New York Times reports Scot Peterson has been charged with seven counts of child neglect, three counts of culpable negligence, and one count of perjury. The officer was eventually terminated after he faced heavy scrutiny for failing to confront the gunman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14, 2018. Peterson was reportedly on the campus at the time of the shooting, but remained outside while faculty, staff members, and students were killed.
"The FDLE investigation shows former Deputy Peterson did absolutely nothing to mitigate the MSD shooting that killed 17 children, teachers and staff and injured 17 others," commissioner Rick Swearingen said in a statement. "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. If convicted on all 11 charges, he will face up to the 96 years in state prison.
Less than four months after the school shooting, Peterson appeared on TODAY to explain his response to the gun shots. He told Savannah Guthrie he assumed the shots were being fired outside and that he would've entered the building had he known about the gunman.
"I didn't even think that someone was inside the building,'' he said. "I never even thought that. I thought, 'There's shooting outside here. I don't know where it is,'" he said. "[...] The families need to know, I didn't get it right, but it wasn't because of 'I don't want to go into the building (or) I don't want to face somebody in there. It wasn't like that at all. I never thought even for a moment of being scared or a coward because I was just doing things the whole time. It never entered my mind."