Fox host keeps citing the Parkland shooting as a reason to keep cops in schools

The police response to the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting was infamously marred by multiple failures, including the school resource officer hiding outside instead of engaging the killer

Amid widespread criticism of police departments after the police killing of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade has been repeatedly citing the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, as an example of why keeping cops in schools is so important. Kilmeade appears to have forgotten the shocking police failures at Parkland that arguably contributed to the death toll.

When the massacre began at the school’s 1200 Building on February 14, Broward Sheriff’s Deputy Scot Peterson, who was the armed school-resource officer at Stoneman Douglas, hid outside instead of intervening to stop the shooting. More deputies arrived a few minutes later, but they also failed to confront the killer even though they got there in time to hear his gunfire. It wasn’t until yet another police department responded that anyone entered the building to confront the gunman. A total of 17 people, mostly children, were murdered. Peterson was later fired and charged with multiple felonies, including child neglect. A supervisor in the sheriff’s department was also fired, but with support from his police union, he was recently rehired with full seniority and back pay

There is evidence that the presence of police in schools is associated with a “higher rate of suspensions, expulsions and arrests that funnel kids into the criminal justice system,” especially in schools where a majority of students are of color -- a concept known as the school-to-prison pipeline. Studies have also shown that having police in schools can negatively impact students’ education. 

In the aftermath of the Parkland shooting, Kilmeade criticized the Broward Sheriff’s Office and Peterson for their failure to act as well as their failure of leadership, and he also spoke in support of having armed personnel in schools.

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Citation From the February 27, 2018, edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends

BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): More is coming out about the sheriff and what he know and what he didn't know. One thing's pretty clear: He doesn't want to take responsibility for almost anything, except forget that maybe perhaps the elevated paycheck because of his position.


KILMEADE: Talking about the report that his deputy, Peterson, did not go inside when the shooting was happening, and as many as four other officers under his command also did not go in. One for sure, as many as four, and the investigation continues. 

However, Kilmeade has recently made multiple references to the Parkland shooting without any mention of the police’s numerous failures. He mentioned the Parkland shooting twice on June 13 as a reminder of why he believes cops should be in schools, and he made a similar argument on June 24, referencing the shooting and resulting March for Our Lives protest and movement.

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Citation From the June 24, 2020, edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends

BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): School safety is paramount in this country. There was marches in the street a year and a half ago because of what happened in Florida, and remember Sandy Hook was not too long ago. And the big debate a short time ago was should we arm teachers who want to be trained? Now we're saying let's get the cops out of there, they're bad. Now, there's different programs where cops are on the outskirts and they'll surge in should there be a school shooter. But I did not know that cops were the problem in schools today.