Florida House speaker Richard Corcoran is calling for a special commission to investigate what he called an “abject breakdown at all levels,” following reports that an armed officer was on site at the Florida high school where a former student killed 17 people with an assault-type rifle, but did nothing to stop the shooter, the Associated Press reports.
Corcoran said the panel, likely be led by a parent of one of the slain children, would have subpoena power. He said reports of a delay in security camera footage scanned by responding police and records indicating that shooter Nikolas Cruz displayed behavioral troubles for years, also merited further inquiry.
But the speaker said the school officer’s failure did not dissuade him from moving ahead with a plan to let local law-enforcement officials train and deputize someone at schools who would be authorized to carry a gun.
Meanwhile, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said a visit to the school prompted him to change his stance on large capacity magazines. Rubio said he is willing to rethink his past opposition to gun control measures if there is evidence that they would prevent mass shootings.
According to Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, the deputy who was on duty at a high school where 17 people were massacred waited outside the building for about four minutes without ever going in. Officer Scot Peterson now has resigned. When asked what Peterson should have done, Israel said the deputy should have “went in, addressed the killer, killed the killer.”
Cruz, 19, has been jailed on 17 counts of murder and has admitted the attack. He owned a collection of weapons. Defense attorneys, state records and people who knew him have described troubling incidents going back years.