The disgraced Parkland school resource officer, formerly of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Scot Peterson, finally broke his silence in an interview with The Washington Post earlier this week. Clearly, he lives with the memory of his inaction to protect those who were killed but claims that he wasn’t just doing nothing and rejected the claims that he is a coward.
After being in virtual hiding for three months, Peterson finally gave an interview to The Washington Post.
Peterson rejects the claims that he is a coward and a failure and that that fateful day in February “haunts” him.
“How can they keep saying I did nothing?” he said. “I’m getting on the radio to call in the shooting. I’m locking down the school. I’m clearing kids out of the courtyard. They have the video and the call logs. The evidence is sitting right there.”
Peterson was also interviewed for NBC’s Today Show.
Now, it seems clear that he was doing those things for sure and he’s not omniscient in determining where the shooter would have been or even what he looked like given that one teacher claims he was in full metal garb, though he was arrested in casual clothing.
“It’s haunting,” Peterson said. “I’ve cut that day up a thousand ways with a million different what-if scenarios, but the bottom line is I was there to protect, and I lost 17.”
While friends told him it was not all on him, Peterson responded, “But that’s the perception. You’re a hero or a coward, and that’s it.”
The Washington Post reports:
“Possible firecracker,” came the call in to his school radio at 2:21 p.m., from one of the school’s eight full-time security guards. “Firecracker over by the 1200 building.”
Peterson had dealt with fireworks on campus before, and if there were ever a likely time for one, it was now, during the last class period on Valentine’s Day. “Probably a few kids acting like idiots,” Peterson remembered thinking, and he stood from his desk and walked out to investigate. His office was a few hundred yards from the 1200 building, and he was heading in that direction with a security guard when a fire alarm went off. Smoke from the firecracker had probably triggered the alarm, Peterson remembered thinking.
He began running toward the 1200 building until one of the unarmed security guards swung by in a golf cart and offered him a ride. Peterson climbed onto the back and jumped off the cart about 20 yards from the 1200 building. The security guard drove away, and Peterson took a few steps toward the building before he heard two loud bangs. They didn’t sound like firecrackers. Maybe gunshots, he thought.
He remembered being unsure whether the blasts were coming from outside or inside the building, or if someone was firing shots in the adjacent parking lot or sniping from the roof. He didn’t know, and no one was there to tell him, and he remembered reacting in those first seconds by doing what he believed he had been trained to do: taking cover in a tactical position so he could clear the area. He leaned his back against the wall of an adjacent building. He took out his gun and scanned the surrounding palm trees, the courtyard, the windows, the parking lot and the roof. He waved at students who were walking through the courtyard and told them to clear the area. He reached for his school radio and gave a “Code Red” to lock down the school. He picked up his police radio for the first time just after 2:23 p.m.
“Please advise, we have possible, uh, could be firecrackers. I think we got shots fired. Possible shots fired, 1200 building,” he said, according to a recording of the radio traffic.
So, you’ve got eight full time security guards on campus and none of them stopped the shooter either. This wasn’t just an issue for Peterson. This is an issue for the other guards. Why are they not also being called out in the matter?
“I was trying to figure it out,” Peterson said. “I was scanning for the shooter, looking over the windows, the sidewalk, the rooftop. I thought maybe it was a sniper like in Las Vegas. I just didn’t know.”
“If I heard more shots, I might have known where to find him,” he added. “If I knew where he was, I could have gone in.”
While I can certainly imagine media whores and anti-Americans like Sheriff Scott Israel sitting back and looking who to place the blame on in the matter, really there is only one person to blame and that is Nikolas Cruz for the murders. However, Sheriff Israel was warned over and over about the criminal behavior of Cruz for a long time.
I can certainly understand some of what Peterson is saying. He had patrolled that campus for more than a decade, and it’s a large campus. Yet, knowing where the shots were coming from, why didn’t he advance in the direction?
Some parents continue to blame him for their children’s deaths.
“I’m tired of him trying to paint himself as the victim,” Fred Guttenberg, the father of 14-year-old Jaime Guttenberg, told the Miami Herald. “He is not a victim. He created victims. He keeps referring to them as his kids. They are not your kids, Scot Peterson! You let them die!”
“He keeps mentioning the third floor,” Guttenberg continued. “If he had done his job, this killing wouldn’t have made it to the third floor. Those people who lost their lives, including my daughter, are victims of his inability to do his job; victims of his failure.”
“This interview makes him even more pathetic than he already was,” Guttenberg added. “You failed me and my daughter. If you are truly sorry, I challenge you to face me.”
Face him? For what? No offense to Mr. Guttenberg, but you chose to send your child to a school indoctrination center. You chose to put her in an environment that is a known soft target for criminals like Nikolas Cruz. You knew it was a gun free zone where more than 90% of all mass shootings take place. You could have chosen different means of educating your daughter, and while I’m sorry for Mr. Guttenberg’s loss, the fact of the matter is that Scot Peterson is not more responsible for the murder of Mr. Guttenberg’s daughter than is Mr. Guttenberg.
That’s like trying to blame the guns for the crime when the person who used the gun should be the focus of justice.
Andrew Pollack, who lost his 18-year-old daughter, Meadow Pollack and has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Peterson and Cruz, mocked Peterson saying, “How could he find him if he’s hiding behind a wall?”
“I think the whole country knows he didn’t do his job and this interview was his way of him trying to live with it,” said Pollack. “He’s just a liar. It’s all on tape.”
“I don’t understand how he can come out and say that he did do his job. He did nothing. He stood outside. He knew the guy was inside killing our kids. It’s all crap,” said Max Schachter, who lost his 14-year-old son, Alex.
“He actually caused more deaths because he told officers not to go in,” Schachter added. “He should be prosecuted.”
In either case, Peterson lost his job and will have to live with the consequences of his action and inaction that occurred in those seven minutes the rest of his life. However, that is not stopping him from receiving and $8,700 pension every single month.
For my part, there’s nothing we can do about the past except to bring justice on the real criminal in this matter, but I once again call on parents to get their kids out of the public indoctrination centers called public school and teach them at home where they can provide not only for their education and values, but for their protection. This is a future preventative action that parents can actually make, and they don’t need government to do it. Your children will thank you for it!
Article posted with permission from Freedom Outpost