Pants on Fire!
"Broward County Sheriff fired for lying about Parkland." on Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018 in a headline

No, Broward Sheriff Scott Israel was not fired by Gov. Rick Scott

A false story on Facebook says Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel has been fired in a cover-up stemming from the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

"Broward County Sheriff fired for lying about Parkland," said the July 3 headline on Your News Wire, a frequent purveyor of fake news.

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While the headline and the first paragraph says that Israel has been fired, the story was lifted from another website that said Israel will be fired.

Big League Politics, a website with a conservative bent, wrote on July 3 that Israel was set to be removed the following week for unspecified "criminal issues" following an investigation by Gov. Rick Scott. It cited information from an anonymous source at the sheriff’s office. The story was written by Laura Loomer, a conservative activist we have written about before.

We emailed Loomer and did not get a reply. We also did not get a reply from Your News Wire.

Israel’s personal attorney Stuart Kaplan said on the WFTL-850 morning show disputed Loomer’s report. We didn’t get a response from Israel’s media relations staff at the sheriff’s office.

The idea that Scott was going to suspend Israel has not been reported by other credible news outlets. We asked Scott’s office if he plans to suspend Israel, and a spokeswoman said that he will review the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigation once it is complete.

Scott ordered that investigation into the law enforcement response in February following the Valentine’s Day shooting. Israel has faced scrutiny for his office’s response to the shooting, including the fact that the school resource officer, Scot Peterson, took position outside of the school rather than go in and engage the shooter. The department is months away from finalizing its investigation and then will submit it to the Broward state attorney for review, an FDLE spokeswoman said.

The governor has the power to suspend public officials for malfeasance, misfeasance, neglect of duty, drunkenness, incompetence, permanent inability to perform official duties, or commission of a felony. Scott has largely suspended public officials who have been accused of crimes.

If Scott removes Israel, a Democrat, he could appoint a replacement in the Democratic-majority county. (Scott, a Republican, is running against Democrat U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson in the Nov. 6 election.)

PolitiFact evaluates information using on-the-record sources and information as of the time that a person or website makes a claim. At the time of this fact-check, he has not been fired. We rate this headline Pants on Fire.