A Broward sheriff’s commander who has drawn scrutiny over her agency’s response to the Parkland school shooting will be replaced, the city said Thursday.
Capt. Jan Jordan, who has led the Parkland district since last year, was the sheriff’s incident commander at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High on Feb. 14, the day a gunman killed 17 and wounded 17 others.
According to records released last week, a Coral Springs deputy fire chief repeatedly asked Jordan for permission to send his medics inside the school but was rebuffed. At the time, the shooter hadn’t been caught, and only a handful of specially trained SWAT paramedics were in the school. Jordan kept telling the deputy fire chief she’d have to check before letting more medics enter, he said. By the time the whole building was deemed safe for them to enter, there was no need — everyone had already been brought out by police or was dead.
The decision to move Jordan was made by Parkland city officials, who have the option to request a change of local leadership.
The city said replacing her is part of a larger evaluation of the city’s contract with the Sheriff’s Office. It didn’t say whether Jordan’s actions in the Parkland shooting contributed to the decision to replace her.
Broward County Commissioner Michael Udine, who represents Parkland, had strong words for Jordan.
“When there are reports of incident commanders being unable to make real-time decisions, changes have to take place,” he said Thursday. “While no one is responsible for the crime besides the shooter, these continuous reports of failure in the system are extremely troubling and must be addressed.”
Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky said Parkland residents “deserve the highest level of public safety possible and that’s what is important to us.” She didn’t comment further.
The city on Wednesday night hired a security consultant company, the Center for Public Safety Management LLC, to review its contract with the agency. The company’s effort will include an analysis of the services wanted by the city, recommendations for 911 call processing and a security assessment of city-owned facilities and parks.
The current sheriff’s contract with the Sheriff’s Office, involving 43 sheriff’s personnel in the city, expires in 2019. A Parkland city spokesman declined to say whether the security company’s evaluation could result in Parkland no longer contracting with the Sheriff’s Office. “Everything is on the table, but we’re not going into it leaning one way or another,” the spokesman, Todd DeAngelis, said. “The information will take us to the best possible outcome.”
By the start of the school year on Aug. 15, Jordan will be replaced with a higher-ranking officer, a major.
Jordan will be transferred to the Sheriff’s Office Department of Administration, effective June 11, according to Veda Coleman-Wright, a sheriff’s spokeswoman.
Jordan couldn’t be reached for comment despite a phone call.
It’s going to cost Parkland about $18,000 more a year to have a law enforcement leader with the rank of major.
Parkland City Manager Bob Payton said the city will ask the Sheriff’s Office for three candidates to replace Jordan.
In a statement, he praised Jordan’s performance, saying she “has provided great leadership” and that he was “truly thankful for her service.”
Payton declined to comment about Jordan’s actions on the day of the shooting. He said he will wait for the outcome of the investigations underway.