FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Former Broward Sheriff’s School Resource Deputy Scot Peterson, accused of hiding during the Parkland school massacre, got extremely emotional following a hearing on Wednesday saying he never would have sat idle if he had known people were being killed.

Peterson, 58, faces multiple counts of child negligence for failing to enter the school building and confront the shooter at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February of 2018.

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After the hearing, Peterson lost his composure and fought back tears.

“I feel for that parent, how could I not? And to sit there and have him even think that I don’t want him to say how he feels, it’s hurtful, it’s hurtful. I didn’t do anything there to try to hurt any child there on the scene,” Peterson said. “I did the best that I could with the information. I did the best … I’ll never forget that day. You know, not only kids died, I have friends that died. And never for a second would I sit there and allow anyone to die, knowing that animal was in that building! Never!”

Prosecutors have said that Peterson failed to come to the rescue as confessed gunman Nikolas Cruz was shooting into classrooms and hallways, leaving 17 dead and 17 others wounded.

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The law that he’s accused of breaking specifically applies to caregivers, but his defense attorney Mark Eiglarsh says a law enforcement officer on a school campus doesn’t fit the legal definition of a caregiver.

They were in court arguing to dismiss the child negligence charges.

The judge has yet to make his decision.

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Cruz, meantime, is charged with 17 counts of first-degree murder and faces a possible death sentence.

CBSMiami.com Team