On Thursday, internal radio dispatches released by Broward County Sheriff’s Office revealed that Broward Deputy Scot Peterson heard the gunshots coming from inside the school, which directly contradicts what his lawyer said last month when he claimed that Peterson thought the shots were coming from outside the building.
Peterson’s attorney, Joseph DiRuzzo III, initially said that Peterson “heard gunshots but believed that those gunshots were originating from outside of any of the buildings on the school campus.” However, the Miami Herald reports:
But internal radio dispatches released by the sheriff’s office Thursday show Peterson immediately fixated on Building 12 and even radioed that gunfire was happening “inside.”
And, just as [the school shooter] was fleeing the building after killing 17 people, Peterson warned his fellow officers to stay away — even as wounded students and staff lay inside.
“[The audio] certainly backs up that he never went into the school,” Jeff Bell, the president of [BSO’s police union, said of Peterson. “At one point he says to keep back 500 feet. Why would he say that?”
At 2:23 p.m., Peterson radioed: “Be advised we have possible, could be firecrackers. I think we have shots fired, possible shorts fired —1200 building.”
The Herald notes that at that moment Peterson arrived at building 12 where he then remained for the next several minutes until the shooting was over.
“We’re talking about the 1200 building, it’s going to be the building off Holmberg Road,” Peterson said moments after arriving at building 12. “Get the school locked down, gentlemen.”
The shooting stopped at 2:27 p.m. when the gunman ditched his weapon and ran out with other students, blending into the crowd.
The Herald reports that “Five seconds later, Peterson radioed for officers to ‘stay at least 500 feet away at this point.’ A dispatcher repeated, ‘Stay away from 12 and 1300 building.'”
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