The 15-year-old student who tried to block a doorway during February’s school schooling in Parkland, Florida, knows who to blame for the attack that left 17 people dead and put him in the hospital for weeks.
In a press conference Friday, Alex Arreaza, the family’s lawyer, read a statement from Anthony Borges putting the blame squarely on the shoulders of Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie and Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel.
“I know I’ve been called Iron Man. And while I’m honored to be called this, I am not. I’m a 15-year-old who’s been shot five times, while Broward Sheriff’s deputies waited outside and decided that they weren’t going to come in the building,” Arreaza read, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
In addressing Runcie and Israel, the statement said, “I want to thank you for visiting me in the hospital. But I want to say that both of you failed us students and parents and teachers alike on so many levels.”
The statement said the program that accused gunman Nikolas Cruz was in put students’ lives in jeopardy.
“I want all of us to move forward to end the environment that allowed people like Nikolas Cruz to fall through the cracks. You knew he was a problem years ago and you did nothing. He should have never been in school with us,” Arreaza read, according to WPBF.
“Alex Arreaza, Anthony’s attorney… wrote: “The failure of Broward County Public Schools, and of the principal and school resource officer to adequately protect students, and in particular our client, from life-threatening harm were unreasonable, callous and negligent.” https://t.co/KC2mSo1Pja
— Maximus (@BYUMaximus) April 5, 2018
Arreaza said that although Borges’ father, Roger, appreciates the praise showered on his son, he wants action.
“He doesn’t want there to be any more bubblegum hero stuff,” Arreaza said.
“The family is adamant that we have to address the failure of (the Broward Sheriff’s Office),” he added, according to the Miami Herald. “This is a serious matter.
“While this young man’s fending off an AR-15 and he’s getting hit with AR-15 bullets, these guys are just standing outside.”
During Friday’s media event, the family expressed displeasure at pictures Israel took while visiting the teenager in the hospital.
“The family is still upset about it,” Arreaza said. “They didn’t appreciate it.”
“I am not grateful for the picture that Israel took of my son in that condition, in any way, and I think it was a mockery to have sent me a $100 check from the school board,” Roger Borges said in Spanish, according to WPLG. “I think it showed a great lack of respect.”
“My son’s soccer career is over, and it’s all their fault,” he said, referencing the school district and the sheriff’s office.
Arreaza said that the incident revealed major school safety flaws and Borges “is the poster child for everything going wrong.”
Earlier in the week, Anthony Borges had made his first public comments since undergoing nine surgeries to recover from the wounds he suffered in the attack.
He's the Parkland shooting survivor you have not seen or heard from until now. Anthony Borges – 9 surgeries later – is finally home from the hospital. He's the hero who held the door taking 5 bullets but saving all inside his classroom. @TODAYshow exclusive 830am. pic.twitter.com/eDnpvEreP2
— Kerry Sanders (@KerryNBC) April 4, 2018
“I (thought) I was going to die,” Anthony Borges said Wednesday during an appearance on “Today,” NBC reported.
But he tried to be upbeat, adding, “I feel good.”
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