Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has issued an executive order, formally suspending Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel.
According to a statement from DeSantis, Israel has “repeatedly failed and has demonstrated a pattern of poor leadership.”
He continued, pointing to what he calls a failure to protect Floridians during the shootings at the Fort Lauderdale International Airport in 2017 and at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018.
DeSantis claims the incidents demonstrate Sheriff’s Israel’s repeated incompetence and neglect of duty.
Israel was criticized after the Parkland shooting for his department’s response to the incident.
DeSantis says government officials must be held accountable for their actions, and/or inactions.
The suspension is effective immediately.
Israel responded to the governor’s statement, saying “I wholeheartedly reject the statements in the Governor’s executive order as lacking both legal merit and a valid factual basis. There was no wrongdoing on my part.”
He also says he intends to “vigorously fight this unjustified suspension” both in court and before the Florida Senate.