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Armed guard resigns after it emerges he 'hid outside' during Florida school shooting

The armed security guard on duty during the Florida school shooting hid outside and “never went in”.

Deputy Scott Petersen has now resigned after being suspended without pay following the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school that left 17 people dead.

Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said Peterson was the school’s resource officer on the day Nikolas Cruz opened fire on students and staff at the school.

Speaking on Thursday, he said: “Scott Peterson was absolutely on campus for this entire event. He was armed, he was in uniform.

“After seeing video, witness statements, and Scott Peterson’s very own statement, I decided this morning to suspend Scott Peterson without pay pending an internal investigation. As is his right, Scott Peterson chose to resign.”

Resigned – Scott Peterson resigned after it emerged he hid outside during the Florida school shooting (Picture: Broward County Schools)

He said Peterson had served the necessary time and met the requirements for retirement so had “resigned slash retired”.

“What I saw was a deputy arrive at the west side of building 12, take up a position and he never went in,” he added.

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Mr Israel said video evidence suggested that Peterson stayed outside for four minutes and “clearly” knew there was a shooting.

Asked what the deputy should have done, he said he should have “went in, addressed the killer, killed the killer”.

‘Never went in’ – the deputy on duty at the Florida school where 17 people were killed by gunman Nikolas Cruz ‘never went in’ (Pictures: AP)

The day before his resignation, the New York Times reported that Peterson had been seen “seeking cover” behind a concrete column.

Peterson, who reportedly said he thought he did a “good job” during the shooting, was apparently Broward County Sheriff Parkland employee of the year and was nominated for Parkland Deputy of the Year.

He was named the city of Parkland’s school resource officer of the year for 2014, with a press release reportedly saying he had been the SRO at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School since 2009 and was praised for “handling issues with tact and judgement”.

 

It has also been suggested that Peterson had a run-in with Nikolas Cruz before the shooting. According to The Washington Post, the deputy is mentioned in a social services report, suggesting that he refused to share any information with them about an incident that took place with the teenager.