Vote of no confidence for Broward sheriff

Broward County, Florida, Sheriff Scott Israel received a largely symbolic vote of no confidence from the Broward Sheriff's Office Deputies Association following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas in February.

Posted: Apr 27, 2018 11:51 AM
Updated: Apr 27, 2018 11:51 AM

Broward County sheriff's deputies took a largely symbolic vote of no confidence against embattled Sheriff Scott Israel, but their leader says he plans to press the issue with Florida Gov. Rick Scott and ask him to reconsider the sheriff's position.

The Broward Sheriff's Office Deputies Association vote was 534-94, with union President Jeff Bell vowing to ask Scott to consider removing Israel and praising the "great courage" of members who voted "under threat of retaliation and reprisal."

"I cannot tell Gov. Scott how to do his job, but I'm asking him ... to re-evaluate the position of sheriff," Bell said. "If he feels that Sheriff Israel must be removed or suspended, we will fully support him in that decision."

Bell said it was the union's first vote of no confidence against a sheriff.

"He fails to listen to the people," he said of Israel. "He fails to listen to the membership and he wants to blame everybody else for his problems."

Bell said 628 members voted and at least two grievances will be filed accusing supervisors of attempting to suppress the no confidence vote.

Israel said in a statement that he was accountable only to the citizens of the county.

"My job is to continue to do the job I was elected to do, which is to ensure the safety of Broward County's 1.9 million residents," the statement said. "I will not be distracted from my duties by this inconsequential IUPA union vote."

Israel accused the union of using the vote to "extort a 6.5% pay raise from this agency," a charge Bell denied.

"Those who purportedly voted in this straw ballot reflect only a small number of the 5,400 BSO employees," Israel said. "The unions representing the vast majority of our employees solidly support the leadership of this agency."

The announcement to hold a vote of no confidence was made Friday and the union cited "many instances of malfeasance ... and the lack of leadership" as reasons for Thursday's vote.

The union also said the sheriff's handling of the Parkland school shooting enraged the rank and file, including an appearance on CNN's "State of the Union" with Jake Tapper during which Israel boasted of his "amazing leadership."

At Scott's request, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting as well as the law enforcement response.

"Gov. Scott believes that people must be held accountable for the reported failures in response to the school shooting in Parkland, which is why he immediately called for a full and systematic FDLE investigation into the matter," spokesman John Tupps said in a statement.

"Once that investigation is complete, and we have all the facts, the appropriate steps will be taken to hold people accountable."

According to Florida statue, Scott has the power to suspend the sheriff for actions such as "misfeasance" and "neglect of duty" and may fill the office by appointment for the period of suspension. The actual power to remove the sheriff from office is in the hands of the state Senate.

CNN emails and calls for comment to the Florida Senate's Office of the President were not returned. According to the body's website, it makes "final dispositions" on whether to reinstate a suspended official or remove him from office.

Eleven days after the February 14 massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran and 73 other Republican representatives sent a letter to Scott, asking him to suspend the sheriff for what they called his "incompetence and neglect of duty."

The lawmakers also cited the failure of Scott and his deputies to enter the school building to stop the shooter, and their failure to act on warning signs about the shooter for years.

"Gov. Scott is absolutely disgusted the BSO deputy did not rush into the school to save these victims," Tupps said in Thursday's statement.

Scott exercised his power to suspend a sheriff in 2016, after then-Marion County Sheriff Chris Blair was indicted on two counts of perjury. In that case, Scott appointed an interim sheriff.

Since the no confidence vote campaign against Israel started last week, two other unions -- The Federation Of Public Employees and Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #53 -- have written letters of support for the sheriff.

"As your largest union, we support you and have confidence in how you are running this large complex agency," said the letter from the public employees' union, which claims to represent 2,500 Broward Sheriff's Office employees.

While the no confidence vote against Israel is symbolic, Bell said it represents the collective voice of the rank and file deputies, and he plans to use that voice to pressure the governor to act.

Bell said Scott's failure to remove Israel would mean he "agrees the sheriff is an amazing leader."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 441935

Reported Deaths: 5885
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin918591461
Ramsey39405729
Dakota32551324
Anoka30638354
Washington19827221
Stearns17686184
St. Louis13453237
Scott1178693
Wright11485101
Olmsted1024870
Sherburne812364
Carver686636
Clay643278
Rice595266
Kandiyohi551069
Blue Earth533833
Crow Wing476573
Otter Tail449860
Chisago446331
Benton414885
Winona383946
Douglas370366
Nobles364646
Mower358026
Goodhue340757
Polk326754
McLeod321644
Morrison308743
Beltrami305746
Lyon298735
Itasca281143
Becker279438
Isanti279440
Carlton276942
Steele26879
Pine263813
Freeborn237219
Todd230029
Nicollet222136
Brown212334
Mille Lacs211645
Le Sueur206515
Cass203823
Meeker197433
Waseca187515
Martin168226
Wabasha16712
Roseau164916
Hubbard146937
Redwood138527
Renville136139
Houston133213
Dodge13134
Chippewa130632
Cottonwood125118
Fillmore12084
Wadena118214
Rock108511
Sibley10757
Aitkin106633
Watonwan10548
Faribault103214
Kanabec96818
Pennington95915
Pipestone92522
Yellow Medicine92514
Murray8585
Jackson84510
Swift82617
Pope7355
Marshall70115
Stevens6968
Clearwater68114
Lac qui Parle65216
Lake62215
Wilkin6179
Koochiching57910
Lincoln4771
Big Stone4513
Unassigned43568
Grant4247
Norman4218
Mahnomen4077
Kittson36619
Red Lake3154
Traverse2433
Lake of the Woods1741
Cook1130

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 300884

Reported Deaths: 4197
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk44949440
Linn17563269
Scott15228161
Black Hawk13552228
Woodbury12896175
Johnson1191749
Dubuque11229148
Pottawattamie8863112
Dallas874169
Story857433
Webster464768
Cerro Gordo458766
Sioux452451
Clinton445461
Warren430637
Marshall424561
Buena Vista389029
Muscatine382275
Des Moines377340
Plymouth347967
Wapello336796
Jasper315955
Lee310828
Marion298852
Jones268949
Henry262130
Carroll252233
Bremer240048
Crawford227622
Boone214116
Washington213531
Benton207543
Mahaska189936
Jackson189631
Tama184757
Dickinson183225
Delaware171136
Kossuth169241
Clay165319
Wright161724
Fayette157022
Buchanan156920
Hamilton156828
Hardin153129
Harrison152961
Winneshiek150819
Clayton149848
Cedar149119
Butler145423
Page143115
Floyd137236
Cherokee137125
Mills135216
Lyon133132
Poweshiek131024
Hancock127924
Allamakee125927
Iowa122122
Calhoun12159
Jefferson118623
Grundy118522
Winnebago117229
Madison11639
Mitchell114634
Louisa113729
Cass111741
Chickasaw110111
Sac110115
Emmet109931
Appanoose108838
Union107922
Humboldt103919
Guthrie102124
Shelby101026
Franklin99818
Unassigned9370
Palo Alto8969
Keokuk84225
Montgomery82722
Howard81119
Monroe79918
Pocahontas77211
Clarke7717
Ida73530
Greene6837
Davis68221
Adair68120
Lucas6458
Osceola6349
Monona62316
Taylor5889
Worth5873
Fremont5005
Van Buren49112
Decatur4744
Ringgold4229
Wayne41321
Audubon4118
Adams2923
Rochester/St. Mary'S
Cloudy
33° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 23°
Mason City
Cloudy
29° wxIcon
Hi: 34° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 15°
Albert Lea
Cloudy
28° wxIcon
Hi: 34° Lo: 29°
Feels Like: 19°
Austin
Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 35° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 25°
Charles City
Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 35° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 24°
A quiet weekend ahead
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

John Marshall ready for 2021

Image

Is the City of Rochester paying men and women equally?

Image

LWVMN asks for "truth and consequences" for state lawmakers

Image

Sports Overtime Part 2

Image

Sports Overtime Part 1

Image

Plans for polar plunge

Image

Equal work and equal pay.

Image

Aaron's Friday Night Forecast

Image

Mega Millions jackpot soars to $750 million

Image

Increase in 2021 travel plans

Community Events