A pair of Florida SWAT team members have been suspended over their response to the deadly Parkland high school shooting — for rushing to the scene to help.
The SWAT members are being disciplined for jumping into action and racing to the rampage scene without permission, officials said.
From New York Post
The Miramar Police Department officers, identified by the Florida Sun-Sentinel as Detectives Jeffrey Gilbert and Carl Schlosser, did not advise supervisors that they were going to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where confessed mass murderer Nikolas Cruz allegedly wiped out 17 students and staff and wounded another 16 people on Feb. 14, department spokeswoman Tania Rues said Wednesday.
The detectives’ suspension only applies to the SWAT team, said Rues, adding that they’ll remain on active duty for other assignments.
Miramar’s SWAT team had been training in Coral Springs near the high school at the time of the shooting rampage and was placed on standby after the active-shooter report came in.
The Broward County Sheriff’s Office never called for the team to respond.
According to the Miramar Police Department, the officers’ decision to respond to the incident posed a safety issue.
The president of the union the officers belong to called the cops “brave and heroic.”
“While it may have been a violation of policy to not notify their supervisors that they were going there, their intentions were brave and heroic, I think,” Jeff Marano, president of the Broward County Police Benevolent Association, told the Florida Sun-Sentinel on Wednesday.
A third SWAT member, Officer Kevin Gonzalez, was suspended for violating the department’s social media policy after he was accused of being linked to posts that “put the city and police in a negative light,” the Florida Sun-Sentinel reported.
All three officers were notified of their suspension from the SWAT team on Feb. 22 and were ordered to surrender their SWAT-issued rifles.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office told the news outlet Wednesday that it could not confirm whether anyone contacted the Miramar department on the day of the shooting, but said Miramar’s SWAT team was “not needed.”