Parkland school shooting

Robert Runcie
Carl Juste for The Miami Herald / WLRN

More than 1,000 people from across Broward County showed up at J.P. Taravella High School in Coral Springs Monday night for a district-wide town hall about school security. 

Amy Beth Bennett / South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP Pool

A Broward County judge wants the case against the confessed Parkland school shooter to head to trial in January 2020. 

Nikolas Cruz, 20, faces the death penalty if convicted of 17 counts of first-degree murder for the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14, 2018. He's been charged with another 17 counts of attempted murder.

Caitie Switalski / WLRN

Family members of victims from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas massacre and shooting survivor David Hogg launched on Monday an effort to get a constitutional amendment on the Florida ballot in 2020 that would ban the sale of assault weapons. 

Hogg and Gail Schwartz, who lost her 14-year-old nephew Alex Schachter at the Feb. 14, 2018 shooting, were among the group that dropped off 200 signed petitions to be certified at the Broward County Supervisor of Elections Office in Downtown Fort Lauderdale. 

Peter Haden / WLRN

Gov. Ron DeSantis has officially removed and suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel. 

DeSantis, sworn in as governor Tuesday, visited the Broward Sheriff's Office headquarters in Fort Lauderdale  Friday afternoon to put weeks of rumors about Israel's fate to rest.

 

"I have no interest in dancing on Scott Israel's political grave," DeSantis told a cheering crowd. "Just suffice it to say that the massacre might never have happened if Broward had better leadership in the sheriff's department."

Associated Press / WLRN

Jessica Levenson remembers the armed guards with bullet proof vests and rifles on campus after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. 

"It made me feel unnerved," she said. 

She said it made Nova High, in Davie, feel more like prison than high school. 

Despite appreciating the extra security, which the Florida Legislature implemented to make school campuses feel safer, she felt less secure.  

David Santiago / Miami Herald

Members of The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission voted unanimously Wednesday morning to send their first report to the state authorities in Tallahassee, in hopes that it increases the pace of reforms recommended to prevent another school shooting in Florida. 

BSO Sheriff Israel Fights For His Job Amid Mounting Criticism

Dec 27, 2018

Less than two weeks before Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis is to be sworn into office, embattled Broward Sheriff Scott Israel sent a letter Wednesday to a state-appointed safety committee, highlighting policy changes in his department following the February mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

The publicly released letter, addressed to MSD High School Public Safety Commission Chairman Bob Gualtieri, outlined seven previously announced initiatives by Israel’s department taken since the shooting in Parkland that killed 17 and wounded 17 others.

Gun control advocates view 2018 as a turning point in their campaign to strengthen the country's gun laws.

They cite widespread success in passing laws through state legislatures. They're also buoyed by Democratic victories in the midterm elections, which flipped control of the House of Representatives. Another benchmark: In this election cycle, gun control groups outspent gun rights groups for the first time ever.

Broward County Sheriff's Office / AP

Ten months after the Parkland school shooting — and dogged by criticism of deputies who failed to immediately enter the building where a gunman killed 17 people — the Broward Sheriff’s Office plans to change the instructions it gives to deputies responding to an active shooting, according to an internal memo obtained by the Miami Herald.

Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission
Lily Oppenheimer / WLRN

This post was updated with additional information at 5:20 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 13.

The statewide commission investigating the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting released a draft of its long-awaited recommendations for school safety on Wednesday.

The 16-chapter draft report includes overhauling how schools secure individual classrooms and campus grounds. 

Amy Beth Bennett via AP pool / WLRN

Confessed Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz was back in Broward County court on Tuesday for routine proceedings as his defense team and state prosecutors prepare for his trial late next year.

Cruz sat between his lawyers in a red jail suit looking down throughout much of the hearing. He is facing the death penalty for murdering 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on Feb. 14. 

The case is headed to trial in September 2019. And lawyers are now reviewing investigation reports and interviewing dozens of witnesses who could testify during the trial.

Emily Michot / WLRN News

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School teachers and students separately protested the abrupt transfer of three administrators and a security guard as part of an ongoing investigation into mistakes leading up and following the Feb. 14 shooting that left 17 people dead on campus.

About 60 teachers stood in a line in front of the Parkland high school early Tuesday morning, some holding signs that read: "Who is this helping?" A few hours later, a few hundred students walked out of class and gathered in a park down the street, a few chanting, "Bring them back!"

Sam Turken / WLRN

Andrew Gillum called for "common sense gun reform" and deflected questions about fundraising with Broward County's embattled sheriff at a campaign stop on Friday in Plantation. 

The Democratic nominee for governor received an endorsement from the gun control group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America after fundraising with Broward commissioners and county sheriff Scott Israel earlier in the morning. 

Peter Haden / WLRN

The state commission that’s investigating the Parkland school shooting discussed on Wednesday ways to improve school safety, agreeing that middle and high school campuses should always have at least one police officer present.

Elementary schools, however, could have an armed guardian instead of an officer or sheriff’s deputy, the panel decided. 

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission, which meets at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, is beginning to draft recommendations as part of its report that will serve as a statewide guide to advance school security. 

Before Lori Alhadeff ran for a seat on her local school board, she had no experience in politics. She didn't even consider herself a "political person," she says.

That changed when her daughter, Alyssa Alhadeff, died in the Parkland school shooting. In February, a former student killed 14-year-old Alyssa and 16 other people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

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