Scot Peterson, the Florida sheriff’s deputy who has been branded a “coward” by President Trump for his behavior at the Parkland school shooting has resigned and is currently under police protection.
Since resigning, Peterson has been hiding out in his West Palm Beach home. When reporters went to the house, they were greeted by six police cars. Palm Beach County sheriff’s deputies stopped reporters from going up to the home.
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel revealed Peterson’s behavior during a press conference on Thursday. While shooter Nikolas Cruz was inside the school, Peterson waited by one of the doors as 17 students and faculty were murdered. Eventually, Cruz left on his own and was apprehended by a different officer. On Thursday, Israel said he was “sick to his stomach at the news and that Peterson was being placed on leave. But Peterson resigned soon after. He has been the school resource officer at Stoneman Douglas High School since 2009.
On Friday morning, President Trump had some harsh words for Peterson, saying “he certainly did a poor job. But that’s the case where somebody was outside, they’re trained, they didn’t react properly under pressure or they were a coward.”
Later, during a speech at CPAC, Trump doubled down on Peterson, saying “he was not a credit to law enforcement” and calling the former deputy “a coward” again.
The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office told NBC Miami that Peterson and his family have requested privacy.
Peterson isn’t the only Broward County sheriff’s deputy in hot water, as two other officers are under investigation after the revelation that the sheriff’s office received over twenty calls concerning Nikolas Cruz.