Parkland shooting: Suspended Broward sheriff sues Florida governor

Scott Israel says he was ousted for political reasons

By Associated Press

In this Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018, file photo, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel speaks before the state commission in Sunrise, Fla. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - The Florida sheriff who was suspended by the governor and accused of failing to prevent the Parkland school shooting has filed a lawsuit alleging Gov. Ron DeSantis improperly ousted him for political reasons.

Suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel says in the lawsuit filed Thursday that DeSantis "engineered a political power play that interferes with the right of the public to determine their elected official."

DeSantis suspended Israel in January and appointed an acting sheriff. The governor's office did not immediately comment Thursday.

The Florida Legislature is reviewing the governor's suspension of Israel.

Before the shooting, Israel had changed his department's policy to say deputies "may" confront shooters, instead of "shall." Critics say that gave eight deputies an excuse for not confronting the gunman during the Feb. 14, 2018, shooting.

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