PARKLAND (CBSMiami) – Panic and fear underlie calls to 911 shortly after confessed gunman Nikolas Cruz opened fire inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High on Valentine’s Day.
Some of the audio from those calls, which were released Thursday, reveals that they were made from the students’ parents and from at least one student inside the school
“She says she’s behind the desk right now, but the shots were close,” one parent told the emergency operator.
The calls from the panicked parents flooded 911 during the shooting. In one call, a mother can be heard speaking directly to her daughter.
“I love you. I love you. It’s going to be fine. Can you hide somewhere? Can you play dead?”
Seconds later, police escorted students from the classroom.
In a call from inside the school, a cry for help had to be whispered, the caller too afraid of being heard by the gunman.
Caller: “Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School…is being shot up. (whispers)”
Operator: “Is being shot up? Are you at the school?”
Operator: “I can’t hear you? Are you at the school?”
Also released Thursday were radio transmissions between law enforcement, including school resource officer Broward Sheriff’s Deputy Scot Peterson who has been criticized for staying outside the building.
Peterson has insisted he thought the gunfire was happening outside of the building but just two minutes into the recording his attention turns to the building where the shooting unfolded.
“We’re looking at the 1200 building,” he can be heard saying.
He then radioed that the disturbance was happening inside the building.
“We also heard it over by – inside the 1200 building.”
Peterson, who has denied any wrongdoing, never entered the building to confront the shooter and at one point even warned first responders to stay away.
“Do not approach the 12 or 1300 building. Stay at least 500 feet away at this point,” he said over the radio.
Peterson has since retired.