Broward County Deputy Scot Peterson is refuting claims that he’s a coward, saying he did not believe gunfire was happening inside the building during the Parkland, Florida school shooting.

In a response sent out by his lawyer, Peterson fights back against the narrative that he “failed to meet the standards of police officers.”

The statement, released by Fort Lauderdale attorney Joseph DiRuzzo, says, “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.”

“Mr. Peterson is confident that his actions on that day were appropriate under the circumstances and that the video (together with the eye-witness testimony of those on the scene) will exonerate him of any sub-par performance,” the letter continues.

Pointing out Sheriff Israel’s hypocrisy when it comes to “jumping to conclusions,” the statement reads:

We note that Sheriff Scott Israel’s accusations are wholly inconsistent with the position he has taken in response to Representative Bill Hager’s criticisms. It is our understanding that Sheriff Israel acknowledged that the investigation remains on-going and that “[i]nvestigations will not be rushed or asked to jump to conclusions.” But this is exactly what Sheriff Israel did, he jumped to a conclusion regarding Mr. Peterson’s performance on February 14th even though Israel claims that “[i]t is more important for us to wait and let the investigators get it right[.]” We question why this statement would not also apply to Mr. Peterson?

The response is referring to Broward Sheriff Israel’s revelation that Peterson waited outside of the school for four minutes while the shooter gunned down students and staff.

In addition to Peterson’s declaration, a medical emergency responder on the scene says he was told to stand down, not enter the building and that law enforcement didn’t follow mass casualty event protocols.

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