Florida Gov Suspends Sheriff Over Parkland Response

Erika Holt
January 13, 2019

"I served the county honorably", Israel said Friday. By April, DeSantis told supporters he would have suspended Israel if he had been governor at the time of the shooting.

Israel had faced criticism over BSO's response to the Parkland shooting, the shooting at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, as well as the response to an inmate who escaped from a Broward County courthouse in 2016, leading to an nearly weeklong manhunt. - Gov. Ron DeSantis asked for their resignations, but some South Florida Water Management District board members are declining to step down.

To be expected, Israel was not happy.

Israel said he intends to "vigorously fight this unjustified suspension", calling it the fulfillment of a political promise, and looks forward to returning to office soon. Aside from court challenges, Israel has the right to challenge his suspension before the Florida Senate, which would hold a trial to uphold his dismissal or overturn it.

Said Israel: "Now the National Rifle Association controls the governor's actions and is trying to control law enforcement in Broward County".

According to the Miami Herald, a state panel investigating the shooting found that sheriff's deputies weren't properly trained, and that they took cover to protect themselves instead of pursuing the shooter.

"There certainly were mistakes made, " Kaplan said.

As I pointed out Wednesday, a final report on the Parkland shooting was released last week.

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The Sun-Sentinel explained the Florida Constitution gives the governor the authority to suspend public officials for "neglect of duty" and other causes.

Under Florida law, the governor can suspend elected officials for criminal activity, misfeasance, incompetence or neglect of duty. Rick Scott, had refused to suspend the sheriff, saying he wanted to wait until investigations were complete before deciding.

Florida House Speaker Jose Oliva said the size of the state and Friday's incident shows the need for DeSantis to have "safe and reliable means of transportation".

"One more second and she makes it", Guttenberg said.

DeSantis, sworn into office earlier this week, criticized the sheriff during his campaign and had signaled that he would likely remove Israel from office.

Israel was criticized for touting his "amazing leadership" during a CNN interview in the days after the shooting.

Israel, a Democrat who has served as the elected sheriff of the agency with 5,800 employees since 2013, accused the newly elected Republican governor of a power grab.

In the months following the shooting, journalists reported that Israel's office had received two calls - one in 2016 and one in 2017 - suggesting the eventual shooter was a potential school shooter.

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