Several Deputies Failed During Parkland Shooting: Safety Commission

In the chaos of the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that left 17 people dead, some officers from the Broward County Sheriff’s Department took as long as a minute to put on ballistic gear before engaging the gunman, according to a new report that calls those officers’ actions “unacceptable.” The draft report, prepared by the state commission that’s probing the brutal massacre, noted that “Several uniformed BSO deputies were either seen on camera or described taking the time to retrieve and put on their ballistic vests, sometimes in excess of one minute and in response to hearing gunshots.” The report added: “Deputy sheriffs who took the time to retrieve vests from containers in their cruisers, removed certain equipment they were wearing so that they could put on their vests, and then replaced the equipment they had removed all while shots were being fired, or had been recently fired is unacceptable and contrary to accepted protocol under which the deputies should have immediately moved towards the gunshots to confront the shooter.”

The report also cited a lack of communication and control, a malfunctioning radio system, and a lack of sufficient active-shooter training as reasons for the deficiencies in police response. While the report made several recommendations—including security upgrades at the school—it did not recommend new gun-control policies.