Parkland Parent Sues 'Coward' Deputy Over Daughter's Death

The father of a Parkland victim filed a lawsuit against the school resource officer who didn't engage the shooter.

Parkland, FL – The father of a student murdered at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has filed a lawsuit against the school resource officer who stayed outside during the shooting.

Andrew Pollack, the father of 18-year-old Meadow, said the lawsuit isn’t about money, but rather, he wanted to make sure that Broward Deputy Scot Peterson became known to everyone.

Pollack was one of three victims' fathers who was appointed to a 16-member commission to investigate the Parkland high school shooting, FOX News reported.

“I’m not interested in any money,” Pollack told The Sun-Sentinel. “I just want to expose what a coward [Peterson] was and that he could’ve saved everybody on the third floor. I don’t want him to go anywhere in the country and not have people recognize what a coward he is.”

The Sun-Sentinel reported that Pollack filed the suit, which also named the estate of Lynda Cruz, James Snead, Kimberly Snead, Henderson Behavioral Health, Jerome Golden Center for Behavioral Health INC, and South County Mental Health Center, INC. as defendants, in Broward County Court.

In the aftermath of the shooting on Feb. 14, investigators discovered video that showed Deputy Peterson, a 33-year veteran of the Broward Sheriff’s Office, stayed outside the 1200 building while a 19-year-old former student went on a shooting spree inside.

Police radio transmission recordings that were released revealed that not only had the school resource officer taken cover outside, he’s also advised arriving officers not to enter the building where an active shooter was on a rampage.

"I filed a wrongful death suit against Deputy Peterson today," Pollack posted on Twitter. "I want to expose that coward so bad. Where ever he goes I want people to recognize him and say that's one of the cowards of Broward. The SRO that let those children and teachers die on the 3rd floor!"

Pollack’s attorney, David W. Brill, filed a lawsuit that detailed former-Deputy Peterson’s failure to act from the moment the school shooter stepped into the building. The suit claimed the 54-year-old school resource officer who stayed outside was the only person armed and trained to deal with an active shooter, according to The Sun-Sentinel.

“Instead of actually entering the building as he should have, Peterson positioned himself out of harm’s way, though within earshot of the Nikolas Cruz carnage,” the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit alleged that the school resource officer never attempted to go inside Building 1200, “never once attempting to save a life, never once attempting to fire a single bullet at Cruz,” The Sun-Sentinel reported.

“Rather, Peterson listened to the din of screams of teachers and students, many of whom were dead or dying, and the blasts of Nikolas Cruz’ repeated gunfire,” the lawsuit detailed the shooting taking place inside the freshman building while the deputy tasked with protecting the students hid outside.

Peterson’s attorney defended his client’s actions following the shooting.

“Let there be no mistake, Mr. Peterson wishes that he could have prevented the untimely passing of the 17 victims on that day, and his heart goes out to the families of the victims in their time of need,” Joseph DiRuzzio said at that time. “However, the allegations that Mr. Peterson was a coward and that his performance, under the circumstances, failed to meet the standards of police officers are patently untrue.”

Peterson resigned after Broward Sheriff Scott Israel suspended him shortly after the shooting.

Meadow Pollack’s father was not the first person to file a lawsuit related to the rampage.

On April 17, Anthony Borges, a student who was shot five times by his former classmate, sued Cruz, the estate of his late mother, the family that took Cruz in after his mother's death, and three mental health facilities that treated Cruz, FOX News reported.

Comments (9)
No. 1-9
Fdlore1
Fdlore1

I hope someone sues that coward Sheriff Scott Israel and he gets fired! Maybe this lawsuit will bring out more details because I know there is more to this than meets the eye!

dsmarine
dsmarine

The elected Sherrif Israel as well as the school administrators, the FBI and yes, the Obama administration that put in place procedures that kept this mentally disturbed shooter from being properly identified to stop him from obtaining firearms.

John-Brown
John-Brown

As much as I agree that this man is a coward, the lawsuit will fail. The Supreme Court has already ruled police do not have the responsibility to protect the public. Castle Rock v. Gonzales

Bad411
Bad411

I'm not sure that the case law you reference is applicable as it appears to address the issue of enforcing a restraining order and not a failure to act, or rather dereliction of duty.

John-Brown
John-Brown

It applies. Just watch the case fail. And I can almost guarantee that case will be referenced regardless of surface belief that it does not relate.

cspcapt
cspcapt

the officer has a legal responsibility to act to protect, he failed and as a result someone died-looks like a cause of action here, even a 1983 violation

John-Brown
John-Brown

I respectfully disagree. There are definite violations of oath, moral and departmental policies, but we are talking the lack of action on the part of the deputy, not an act that caused harm. We will have to wait and see.

LEO0301
LEO0301

You're right John-Brown. I understand this man's anger and the need to do something, but this suit will go nowhere. The only thing it will accomplish is to keep this deputy's face in the mind of the public. And since his goal is not money, he may very well get what he is looking for.

John-Brown
John-Brown

The lack of action by the deputies on the scene truly piss me off, but as you say, it will keep this deputy in the public mind which will only enflame this anti police sentiment that is so dangerous to the cops on the beat.