The only demand for his return is coming from Israel himself.
It may come off as something utterly amazing to anyone living outside of the South Florida area, but for those of us residing in these environs, it is hardly shocking. The deposed Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel has declared that he intends to run for the position once again in the next election.
This despite a community that is desperate to move on from the tragedy of the Parkland Florida tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and relieved that some level of accountability has come to the leadership that oversaw those events. (The school board and county superintendent are still being addressed via grand jury investigations, as their positions are not under the purview of Governor Ron DeSantis.)
For Israel to undertake this brazen move is proof of a man who feels he is fully entitled to this position. It also displays a remarkable lack of introspection and an abject lack of a feeling of accountability. There is no shortage of reasons and evidence for Israel to be faced with that would cause a decent individual to slink away quietly.
- He peacocked loudly during the CNN town hall staged immediately after the shooting took place.
Once it was learned his deputies failed to enter the school to engage the shooter in a timely fashion he answered charges of lax training methods by claiming he was “an amazing leader”.
- After the shooting, his deputies were asleep on duty at the school and allowed the shooter’s brother to come onto campus repeatedly. Then Governor Rick Scott ultimately replaced BSO with state troopers as guards on campus.
- Instead of working to change the methods and practices of his department, Israel employed a PR firm to repair his own image.
- It was revealed that his sheriff’s office had been called out to the shooter’s home multiple times without ever taking authoritative action.
- The lack of legal engagement facilitated the purchase of a weapon by the shooter, as he had no prior record on the background check.
- His own deputies’ union returned a vote of “No Confidence” against him last year.
An independent commission investigating the events around the shooting found numerous reasons to find fault with the actions/performance of BSO.
- Deputy Scott Pederson, who was the school resource officer who refused to enter the school building, was forced into retirement and has now been charged with manslaughter due to his inaction.
- Once removed from his position by newly elected Governor Ron DeSantis, Israel sued the action. His suspension has been upheld repeatedly in the courts, and ultimately the State Senate.
Israel even chose a particularly poor moment to declare his bid for reelection. On the very day he makes this audaciously horrible announcement, his own department comes under official rebuke. The Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission voted unanimously to strip the Broward Sheriff’s Office of accreditation. That will become a rather thorny issue for the disgraced and deposed Israel to overcome in his campaign.
Despite ALL of these indicators, Israel continues to operate as if there is a desire for him to reoccupy his seat. The facts and the community essentially have stipulated he leave. The courts have repeatedly upheld the decision to have him removed. Newly appointed Sheriff Gregory Tony has been a steadying force and has purged remnants of the Israel regime from the BSO.
Everyone is happy to progress forward, with the exception of the disgraced Israel. One day the community hopes he ultimately gets the message, fading into obscurity.