Two Florida SWAT officers suspended for responding to Florida school shooting

Two SWAT team members in Florida have reportedly been suspended for choosing to respond, without permission, to a shooting at a high school in Florida where 17 people tragically lost their lives.

According to the Florida Sun-Sentinel, two Miramar, Florida, SWAT team members were on duty, in the area at the time of the shooting. The SWAT officers chose to respond to the school, despite not having been told to. According to the Miramar Police Department, their decision, "created an officer safety issue and left them unaccountable for their actions," the Sun-Sentinel reports. 

Complete Coverage: Parkland School Shooting

Detective Jeffrey Gilbert and Detective Carl Schlosser were notified of their suspension on February 22, the newspaper reports. They were instructed to turn in their SWAT-issued rifles immediately. The two reportedly remain on active duty for their other assignments.

Union officials are defending the actions of the SWAT officers, saying that they were following their natural instincts to help those in need when they responded to the school. 

“While it may have been a violation of policy to not notify their supervisors that they were going there, their intentions were brave and heroic, I think,” Police Benevolent Association President Jeff Marano told the Sun-Sentinel.

On Wednesday, a Florida grand jury has formally indicted Nikolas Cruz in the Parkland school shooting. He has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder in the first degree and 17 counts of attempted murder in the first degree. 

The names of the 17 victims killed on February 14, 2018 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are Luke Hoyer, Martin Duque-Anquiano, Gina Mantalto, Alexander Schachter, Alaina Petty, Alyssa Alhadeff, Nicholas Dworet, Helena Ramsay, Christopher Hixon, Carmen Schentrup, Aaron Feis, Scott Biegel, Meadow Pollack, Cara Loughran, Joaquin Oliver-Padauy, Jaime Guttenberg and Peter Wang.

Mary Stringini is a Digital Producer at ABC Action News. Follow her on Twitter @MaryWFTS.

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