Prosecutor: Charges against ex-deputy Scot Peterson unique

Posted at 4:23 PM, Jun 07, 2019

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida prosecutor says the decision to charge a former sheriff's deputy with child neglect and culpable negligence for failure to confront the Parkland school shooter is unique and would generally not apply to law enforcement officers or other first responders.

Broward County State Attorney Mike Satz made the statement in a news release Friday.

Satz says the charges apply specifically to 56-year-old Scot Peterson's inaction during the February 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that left 17 dead.

Satz says as the school's resource officer, Peterson was legally a caregiver and can be held criminally liable for making "no reasonable effort" to protect children from harm. Peterson's lawyer contends the charges should not apply.

Twenty-year-old Nikolas Cruz faces the death penalty if convicted in the shooting.