Parkland parents applaud deputy’s arrest

(NBC News) The school resource officer who failed to confront a gunman who shot and killed 17 students and staff at a Parkland, Florida high school appeared in court Wednesday.

Scot Peterson was arrested Tuesday and charged with eleven counts in connection with his failure to act during the massacre.

Peterson appeared via videolink for his initial court appearance.

Bond was set at $102,000 and Peterson was ordered to surrender his passport before release.

The charges came 15 months after the deadly attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Several parents who lost children applauded the charges.

“He took an oath as a police officer to protect, and that day he stood outside that building while 17 people were being murdered, and he did absolutely nothing,” Gena Hoyer said.

Peterson defended his actions during an interview with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie last year.

“I know the policies, I know the procedures. I communited right on that scene, I did everyting that I felt at the time was appropriate,” he said.

Surveillance video from the day of the shooting shows Peterson standing outside the high school’s building Number 3 while gunman Nikolas Cruz went floor to floor, carrying out his killing spree.

Some of his fellow officers are defending Peterson’s actions.

“He never put anybody in harm’s way by his failure to act, so we think that’s going to be weak in a court of law,” says Jeff Bell, president of the Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputies Association.

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