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April 25, 2019

Four Marjory Stoneman Douglas staffers reassigned in reaction to February school shooting that killed 17

November 28, 2018
A Broward County Sheriff’s Office vehicle is parked outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla. (Wilfredo Lee / AP)

More than nine months after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Superintendent Robert Runcie has reassigned four employees over their dealings with school shooter Nikolas Cruz. Some protesters are calling those moves symbolic and asking Runcie to reconsider.

Media and community members have questioned for months why senior school officials haven’t been held accountable for failing to recognize the threat posed by Cruz, a troubled former student with special needs who slaughtered 17 people and injured 17 more during a Feb. 14 campus shooting spree.

The Sun-Sentinel identified the transferred staffers as assistant principals Jeff Morford, Winfred Porter Jr., and Denise Reed, along with security specialist Kelvin Greenleaf.

The most high-profile figure to have stepped away from his job in the aftermath of the tragedy was school deputy Scot Peterson, who took cover outside the school until the coast was clear. He was allowed to retire with an annual pension of more than $100,000.

Florida school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz killed 17 and wounded 17 others in a mass shooting on Feb. 14.
Florida school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz killed 17 and wounded 17 others in a mass shooting on Feb. 14. (Amy Beth Bennett / AP)

School officials did not say where the reassigned employees will be stationed. Broward Principals and Assistants Association representative Lisa Maxwell reportedly said the three vice principals would work from various district offices pending an investigation. She called relocation of the administrators “an attempt to hand over people to deflect attention and focus and criticism,” and said employees had not been trained to handle a situation like the shootings in Parkland, Fla.

Maxwell added that the assistant principals “have suffered, and as a result of this travesty, they’re being made to suffer again.”

Students and protesters showed up outside the school Tuesday with signs reading “Bring them back” and “Don’t re-victimize us” according to USA Today.

A state commission investigating the shootings said the Broward Sheriff’s Office response “wasn’t sufficient.” None of the eight officers who arrived on the scene, but failed to enter the school despite hearing gunshots have been reprimanded.

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