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Gov. Ron DeSantis removed Broward Sheriff Scott Israel from office Friday, replacing him after 10 months of turmoil spawned by the slaughter of 17 staff and students in Parkland.
The governor replaced Israel with former Coral Springs Police Sgt. Gregory Tony, 40, who has a background in active-shooter training.and becomes the first black sheriff in Broward County’s history.
DeSantis - Suspension - Broward - Sheriff - Office
DeSantis announced the suspension from the Broward Sheriff’s Office headquarters, while the displaced former sheriff prepared a response from a black church in northwest Fort Lauderdale.
The suspension caps a nearly year-long series of revelations that exposed the failure of Broward sheriff’s deputies to run in to save children at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Some deputies said they couldn’t remember when they’d last been trained to handle an active shooter, even though the agency had a confused, chaotic response to a mass shooting at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in 2017.
Israel - Leadership - Agency - Scrutiny - Criticism
Israel’s leadership of the agency has come under intense scrutiny, and he’s received extensive criticism over the massacre in which 17 people were killed and 17 wounded on Valentine’s Day.
Though he enjoyed strong popularity in Broward before the shooting, Israel’s star fell in the aftermath, particularly after a disastrous appearance on CNN in which he praised his own leadership and glossed over his agency’s mistakes.
Family - Members - Victims - People - Parkland
Many family members of victims and people in Parkland, where the school is located, blame Israel for the agency’s handling of the teenage killer during interactions before the shooting, and for the way it handled the situation on the day of the massacre.
The Florida Constitution gives the governor power to suspend public officials for “malfeasance, misfeasance, neglect of duty.” Governors routinely remove public officials who are arrested or charged with crimes, but it is unusual to remove an officeholder who does not face criminal charges.
It was the second removal of a...
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