PARKLAND, FL- The senseless mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School two years ago affected the lives of so many. The tragic loss of 17 innocent victims compelled law enforcement, grieving families, community leaders and everyday citizens to look for lasting solutions to mass violence in our county. Many were determined to get involved to make Broward County a safer place to live, and they did. We’ve come a long way; however, there is more we can do.
At the Broward Sheriff’s Office, we take all threats of violence in our schools very seriously. Since launching our Real Time Crime Center in early 2019, we have investigated hundreds of these threats and made more than 50 arrests. In December, BSO arrested three Broward County students who made violent threats against a school. Today, every threat received is presumed to be real, and we take immediate action to investigate each one.
Education will play an important role in continued change. Together, let’s get a solid message out. I encourage you to teach your students, children, grandchildren and neighbors that a “joke” about violence is not funny and is never acceptable. Whether it’s a post on social media or a threatening note left in a locker, the outcome can change someone’s life forever. Comments or threats like these are presumed to be a real danger and are punished to the fullest extent of the law. Don’t let someone you know be the next person arrested for this type of “joking” behavior. Let’s be proactive in stopping this unsafe trend and memorialize MSD in a different way – Make Smart Decisions.
As a community, let’s continue in our joint efforts to improve public safety to ensure every citizen is safe and feels safe. Think about ways you can get involved and help keep your community crime free. To learn more about programs offered by BSO or ways you can get more involved in your community, visit sheriff.org/NST.
The 17 stars etched in the center of our Real Time Crime Center logo serve as a daily reminder of the importance of its mission. Each star represents a life of those who we lost on February 14, 2018: Alyssa Alhadeff, Martin Duque Anguiano, Scott Beigel, Nicholas Dworet, Aaron Feis, Jaime Guttenberg, Christopher Hixon, Luke Hoyer, Cara Loughran, Gina Montalto, Joaquin Oliver, Alaina Petty, Meadow Pollack, Helena Ramsay, Alex Schachter, Carmen Schentrup and Peter Wang. We will never forget.
Service Equals Reward
Sheriff Gregory Tony