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He Was Suspended Over Parkland, Is Now Out for Good

State Senate in Florida votes to remove Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 24, 2019 9:00 AM CDT
Former Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel appears before Florida's state Senate Rules Committee concerning his dismissal by Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday in Tallahassee, Fla.   (AP Photo/Steve Cannon)

(Newser) – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis had already suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel. Now the state Senate has removed Israel from his elected position for good. CNN reports on the 25-15 vote Wednesday that now makes Israel's removal official; it came nine months after DeSantis put Israel's job on hold amid allegations of neglect of duty and departmental failures regarding both the February 2018 Parkland school shooting and the mass shooting at Fort Lauderdale's airport the previous year. The Sun Sentinel notes the vote was mostly along party lines, with the majority of GOP senators aligning with the Republican governor and most Dems voting to reinstate Israel, who is a Democrat. All five Broward senators, four of them Democrats, voted for reinstatement.

In a statement cited by the New York Times, DeSantis thanked the Senate for "tending to this matter." Per Newsweek, Israel posted a statement on Twitter Wednesday (a post that now appears to have been deleted) calling the decision a politically motivated "power grab." "I am sad to report that politics won the day," Israel said. "Your vote has been stolen and the results of our 2016 election have been overturned. From 450 miles away, the Governor substituted his judgement for yours and installed his own sheriff in Broward County." He says he'll run again in 2020, and via a spokesperson, DeSantis notes that if the people choose Israel as they did in 2012 and 2016, DeSantis "will not suspend him for previous actions of neglect of duty and incompetence." (Read more Parkland school shooting stories.)

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