As a student known to have psychiatric issues and a criminal record murdered 17 students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine’s Day 2018, Sgt. Brian Miller hid behind his car instead of helping teenagers and faculty.
Miller was fired along with three other deputies due to a “neglect of duty,” but he now has been reinstated with full back pay, The Miami Herald reported. Miller was paid $138,410.25 in 2017, and was fired in June 2019, more than a year after the shooting.
Miller was reinstated thanks to the Broward Sheriff Office’s Deputies Association, the union that represents the officers. After he was fired, Miller challenged his termination and the union backed him up. The union announced Wednesday that an arbitration hearing found “BSO violated Sgt. Brian Miller’s constitutional due process rights and improperly terminated him.”
A sheriff’s offices internal investigation determined Miller, along with deputies Edward Eason, Scot Peterson, and Joshua Stambaugh all failed in their duties to protect citizens and were all terminated. Capt. Jan Jordan, who took the lead during the Parkland, Florida, shooting in 2018 and urged officers not to enter the school, was allowed to resign.
The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission said in its investigative report of the shootings that Miller was the first supervisor on the scene, but he hid behind his police car without radioing in for 10 minutes as shots were fired inside the school.
As the Herald reported, Eason “failed to immediately enter the high school grounds, and drove away from the gunfire to another part of campus to put on his bulletproof vest, the report found. The report also said Eason never activated his body camera and told investigators he didn’t know where the shooting was coming from.”
Stambaugh, the Herald reported, “was working off-duty at a nearby private school when the call went out for help. His body camera caught the sounds of Cruz’s last gunshots as he hid behind his cruiser, at one point telling a supervisor that three people were down, the commission said.”
As The Daily Wire’s Ryan Saavedra previously reported, Peterson, the fourth deputy fired and the one assigned as Marjory Stoneman’s school resource officer, was arrested and charged with seven counts of child neglect, three counts of culpable negligence, and one count of perjury. The case is still ongoing. If convicted, Peterson could face a maximum sentence of 96.5 years in state prison.
As for Scott Israel, who was the Broward County sheriff at the time of the shooting, he was suspended from duty shortly after Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) was inaugurated. Israel said he was wrongfully terminated and is running to be elected sheriff again.
DeSantis, according to the Herald, appointed Gregory Tony to replace Israel. Tony suspended Jeff Bell, the leader of the Broward police union that reinstated Miller. Bell was suspended with pay, accused of corruption, conduct unbecoming, and various policy violations including truthfulness.
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