74 Florida Republican Lawmakers Are Calling for the Sheriff in the Parkland Shooting to Be Suspended

Read the letter they sent Florida Governor Rick Scott.

Lannis Waters/ZUMA

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Hours after Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel called his own leadership during the recent Parkland, Florida shooting “amazing” in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, 74 Republican lawmakers are calling for Israel to be suspended for “incompetence and neglect of duty.”

Israel has faced mounting criticism for his department’s response before and after the shooting that left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14. On Sunday morning, Florida Gov. Rick Scott ordered the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the sheriff’s office’s handling of the attack. But Scott stopped short of suspending Israel, despite the urging of the Florida Republican caucus. 

“In the years leading up to this unspeakable tragedy, Sheriff Israel, his deputies, and staff ignored repeated warning signs about the violent, erratic, threatening, and antisocial behavior of Nikolas Jacob Cruz,” wrote the Speaker of the Florida House, Richard Corcoran.

Read the rest of Corcoran’s letter here:

One of the first calls for Israel’s ouster came on Saturday, when Florida State Rep. Bill Hager (R-Boca Raton) demanded the governor remove Israel from power altogether. Israel defended himself in response, arguing that Hager’s claims were “riddled with factual errors, unsupported gossip, and falsehoods.” Here’s the full text of his reply:

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Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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