The Broward County Sheriff’s Office released surveillance video on Wednesday showing the chaotic moment that students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School realized there was a gunman on campus — and began running for their lives.
Much of the footage is blurred to protect the identities of the kids, but their fear can be easily seen.
The students calmly walk outside the Florida school — preparing for their afternoon dismissal — before getting alerted to the danger.
Nikolas Cruz, their former classmate, had managed to sneak onto campus with an AR-15 rifle in an effort to take out as many people as possible, according to cops.
He wound up killing 17 before dropping his weapon and escaping among the frightened students, investigators said.
The surveillance video, which was shot from exterior cameras, shows kids running outside several different buildings. It’s unclear if Cruz has already blended in and escaped at this point.
Outside buildings 7 and 8, students can be seen walking around campus nonchalantly before others come running up in a panic. They appear to inform them of the situation and quickly convince their classmates to flee.
School staff eventually come into view and can be seen ushering kids to safety. Several minutes later, sheriff’s deputies armed with AR-style rifles appear and start slowly patrolling the scene.
The Broward County Sheriff’s Office was forced to release the footage on Wednesday after being ordered by the Florida Supreme Court. Media outlets from Parkland and elsewhere had requested that it be made public — saying it would help shed light on how cops responded to the shooting.
Many people have criticized the sheriff’s office and school security team, claiming they didn’t do enough that day.
Coral Springs police officers, for example, told reporters that they saw some deputies taking cover outside Stoneman Douglas instead of running towards the action.
Footage released earlier this year showed school resource officer Scot Peterson hiding out next to a building while the mayhem was unfolding. The video released Wednesday does not show him entering the building a single time.
Peterson has since retired as deputy after being told about an investigation that was launched into his response. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is reportedly handling the probe.
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