With DeSantis' announcement looming, this could be Israel's last day as sheriff

Governor to make statement 'on holding government officials accountable'

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - As Gov. Ron DeSantis prepares to "make a statement on holding government officials accountable" later Friday in Fort Lauderdale, sources told Local 10 News two names are on the short list of candidates to replace Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel if he is removed from office as expected.

Here is a look at the possible candidates to replace Israel:

Al Lamberti

AP Photo/Alan Diaz

Broward County Sheriff Al Lamberti, pictured here in 2007, was defeated by Scott Israel in 2012.

The former Broward County sheriff was appointed to the position by Gov. Charlie Crist in 2007 after then-Sheriff Ken Jenne was indicted on federal corruption charges.

Lamberti was a longtime Broward Sheriff's Office employee, joining the department as a detention deputy in 1977 and rising through the ranks before eventually becoming district chief in Deerfield Beach.

After being elected by the citizens of Broward County in 2008, Lamberti lost his re-election bid to Israel in 2012.


John Fry

Broward County Judge John Fry has been on the bench since 2010.

Fry is a Broward County judge who was first elected in 2010. He was re-elected to a new six-year term in 2016.

Prior to becoming judge, Fry was a Margate police officer.

The former Marine attended law school at the University of Miami.


Politico is reporting that former Coral Springs police Sgt. Gregory Tony is also a top candidate.

Gregory Tony

Blue Spear Solutions

Gregory Tony is a former Coral Springs police sergeant.

Tony now serves as president of Blue Spear Solutions, which specializes in active-shooter training, according to the company's website.

The retired Coral Springs police sergeant received his undergraduate degree in criminology from Florida State University, where he played football, and earned a master's degree in criminal justice from Nova Southeastern University.

Andrew Pollack, whose daughter, Meadow, was one of 17 people killed during last year's Valentine's Day massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, told Politico that Tony is a good friend and retired as the "most-decorated sergeant" in Coral Springs.

Tony was not with the Coral Springs Police Department during the shooting.


DeSantis is making his statement at 3 p.m. at the Broward Sheriff's Office headquarters. A news release from the governor's office said DeSantis will be joined by Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nunez and Attorney General Ashley Moody.

This move all but signals that DeSantis is following through on his campaign promise to oust the embattled two-term sheriff.

Israel has been under intense scrutiny over perceived failures by the BSO response to the Parkland school shooting.

Much of the mistakes are outlined in the lengthy Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission report finalized last week.

Pollack is among those Parkland parents who have been calling on DeSantis to remove Israel.

"Now that he got elected, we're going to see some accountability," Pollack told Local 10 News in Tallahassee, where he was attending DeSantis' inauguration.

Pollack said he will be with the governor for the announcement.

During DeSantis' trip to South Florida to announce his first Florida Supreme Court pick Wednesday, the governor promised that he "shall return very soon" when asked about Israel's future.

By Friday afternoon, Broward County could have a new sheriff.

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