Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said Sunday he couldn't be sure if the Stoneman Douglas High School massacre could have been prevented if his office had handled matters differently.
Israel appeared on CNN's "State Of The Union" for a nearly half-hour interview with host Jake Tapper, who drilled down on the department's lack of response to multiple tips that Nikolas Cruz was a potential school shooter, the response to the shooting as it happened and that one of his deputies, Scot Peterson, didn't engage the shooter as the killing unfolded despite being on campus.
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"Do you think that if the Broward County Sheriff's Office done things differently, this shooting might not have happened?" Tapper asked.
"If ifs and buts were candies and nuts, O.J. Simpson would still be in the record books," Israel said.
"I don't know what that means," Tapper said. "There's 17 dead people and a whole long list of things your department could have done differently."
Israel said that's what after-action reports were for, saying he had entered into discussions to have an independent report done on his department.
"We understand everything wasn't done perfectly," he said.
Israel acknowledged lives could have been saved if Peterson entered the building rather than staying outside as the massacre unfolded. He said it remained to be seen what else might have saved people regarding conduct by his department.