Scott Israel, ex-Broward sheriff, to step down as Opa-locka police chief

City initially says chief announcing ‘retirement,’ then says announcing ‘resignation’

FILE: Opa-locka police chief Scott Israel

OPA-LOCKA, Fla. – After a little more than a year on the job, Scott Israel, the former Broward County sheriff, is set to step down from his role as Opa-locka’s police chief.

The city announced Thursday afternoon that it intended to hold a news conference “announcing the retirement of Opa-locka Police Chief Scott Israel” Friday morning.

Hours later, the city changed its terminology in an updated news release. The stated topic of news conference became about “the resignation of Opa-locka Police Chief Scott Israel.”

A city spokesperson said: “We are issuing an immediate correction following the update from the Office of Chief Scott Israel, informing us and the city that he is in fact RESIGNED and not seeking retirement,” emphasis theirs.

Opa-locka hired Israel as its police chief in May of 2022, following a stint with the town of Davie’s police department as a traffic enforcement officer.

Gov. Ron DeSantis removed Israel from office over the Broward Sheriff’s Office response to the Parkland school shooting on Feb. 14, 2018 that left 17 people dead and 17 others injured.

He later tried to win back his old job but lost to DeSantis’ appointee, current Sheriff Gregory Tony.

A news release from the city doesn’t specify Israel’s reasons for stepping down.

Rumors of Israel’s departure had swirled in recent weeks, however. Israel, in a May 22 text message, denied that he was leaving the department.

“News to me,” he said.

The very next day, Opa-locka’s city manager also denied that Israel was stepping down.

Local 10 News reporters Glenna Milberg and Hatzel Vela contributed to this report. The story has additionally been updated to reflect the city’s updated characterization of Israel’s departure.

About the Author:

Chris Gothner joined the Local 10 News team in 2022 as a Digital Journalist.