Florida High School Shooting 911 Calls Reveal Chaos as Shooter Continues Shooting Rampage

Newly released 911 calls made by terrified parents and students during the Parkland, Florida, school shooting have revealed the panic and confusion that ensued as emergency services attempted to respond to the situation.

Broward County Sheriff's Office released the calls it received during the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14, as well radio transmissions made by its deputies and Coral Springs police officers attending the scene of the crime.

Seventeen people were killed after a gunman, allegedly former student Nikolas Cruz, opened fire at the school using an AR-15 assault weapon. The shooting was the deadliest to occur at a U.S. school since Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in 2012.

Students were evacuated from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on February 14 after a gunman opened fire inside the school. The suspect has been apprehended by authorities, and is a former student of the school. REUTERS

During one of the 911 calls, one mother can be heard saying: "My daughter just texted me from the school.... She says there's an active shooter.

"She says she's behind the desk right now. She says the shots were close," she adds.

Elsewhere, one person dialed 911 on behalf of another parent, who was speaking on the phone with her daughter. During the call, the mother can be heard in the background advising her daughter to play dead if she sees the gunman.

The caller tells the operator: "There's no place to hide…. They're [students] crouched [under] the window."

Over the top, the mother can be heard saying: "Oh my God, I love you. It's the cops? Can you play dead?... If he shoots, you need to play dead. If he shoots, play dead."

The caller then says the police entered the room where the children were hiding and escort them to safety. "Thank you for all your help. I hope this turns out to be not as bad," the caller said.

The dispatcher replies "I hope so too…. Oh my God."

Nikolas Cruz Parkland school shooting
Nikolas Cruz is placed in handcuffs is led by police near Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School following the shooting incident in Parkland, Florida, on February 14. WSVN.com via REUTERS

Only one of the calls made public come from inside the school, in which a teenage boy can be heard attempting to tell the dispatcher there's a shooter while keeping his voice down.

"I'm sorry. I can't hear you," the operator says. "What's happening?"

"Somebody is shooting up Stoneman Douglas," the boy whispers back. "Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School is getting shot up," he repeats before the call cuts out.

Broward County Sheriff's Office also released audio of the radio transmission between officers as the shooting unfolds.

In one of the clips, Deputy Scot Peterson says over channel, "Be advised we have possible, could be firecrackers, I think we have shots fired, possible shots fired—1200 building."

Peterson later adds: "I hear shots fired by the football field, shots fired by the football field."

Nikolas Cruz
Nikolas Cruz, facing 17 charges of premeditated murder in the mass shooting at the school in Parkland, Florida, appears in court for a status hearing in Fort Lauderdale on February 19. Mike Stocker/Reuters

According to transcripts of the dispatches, Peterson is then observed via surveillance footage near the southeast corner of one of the buildings.

"He appears to remain in this area for the duration of the incident," the transcripts adds.

Peterson later resigned following criticism of his actions during the shooting, including from Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, who said he should have "went in, addressed the killer, killed the killer."

Officers could also be heard helping those either injured or attempting to escape the school. One officer who was at the football field, asks over the radio: "Does anybody have bolt cutters? I can get this kid out of the fence. He's stuck in the fence, I need bolt cutters."

Another unit adds: "The coach is with him; see if he can help him over the gate."

Cruz, who at the time was described over the radio as a male in a hoody with a possible AR-15 or AK-47, denies all the murder charges against him.

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