PARKLAND, FLA. (WSVN) – Officials have recommended that Parkland retain the Broward Sheriff’s Office as the city’s police provider.
After a nearly year-long review following the fatal mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, BSO will stay in Parkland for the next two years, the city announced Friday.
Max Schachter, who lost his son Alex Schachter in the February 2018 shooting, said that the families of all 17 victims support the city’s decision.
“The new sheriff is building a state-of-the-art, $30 million training facility, and I know that he is going to make sure that during the next mass casualty event, his deputies respond, they go in and they save lives,” Schachter said.
The city of Parkland hired the Center for Public Safety Management to investigate whether BSO was the best choice as the city’s police agency or if the city should create its own agency.
Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky said, “CPSM cited an unfavorable national landscape for officer recruitment and retention, including that of a qualified police chief experienced in starting a new agency.”
BSO said they are involved in taking CPSM’s recommendations to improve its community policing presence.
“We’ve instituted educational programs,” BSO Capt. Chris Mulligan said. “We are in the middle of putting together an explorer program for our 14 to 21-year-old young adults. Everywhere I go in the city and the contact I have with the residents, everything is positive.”
On the day of the mass shooting, there was a radio issue between BSO and Coral Springs Fire Rescue and other police agencies.
Coral Springs Fire Rescue Chief Frank Babinec said that issue has since been fixed.
“As we stand here today, both of our radios have each other’s channels on them,” Babinec said. “Our firefighters are able to go to BSO’s channels. BSO is able to come to our fire rescue channels.”
The contract between BSO and Parkland will expire on Sept. 30.
Negotiations between the two parties is scheduled to begin soon.
Parkland officials said if negotiations go well, they will renew their contract with BSO.
Source: WSVN-TVSunbeam Television Corp