FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The next phase of jury selection was underway Monday in the trial of Scot Peterson, the former Broward Sheriff’s Office deputy accused of failing to confront the gunman during the Parkland school shooting.
Peterson, 60, who retired with a $104,000 pension after the shooting, is facing 11 charges: seven counts of felony child neglect, three counts of misdemeanor culpable negligence, and one count of perjury.
There were 55 prospective jurors as of Monday afternoon. That pool will be narrowed down to 10 — six jurors and four alternates.
Pretrial publicity was the main topic Monday. The judge gave potential jurors an open-ended questionnaire, asking them what impact knowing, learning or seeing anything about the shooting had on them.
The judge reminded potential jurors that having heard about the case wouldn’t necessarily disqualify them.
Both sides are expected to bring up the idea of the school resource officer as a caregiver, making the case one that will be watched by legal analysts across the country and potentially setting a precedent.
Prosecutors accuse Peterson of failing, declining or refusing to investigate the source of the gunshots; seek real-time information from 5 students who fled the 1200 building; move toward the sound of gunfire; or seek out, confront, or engage the shooter.