Current Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony narrowly beat out his predecessor Scott Israel in a Florida Democratic primary for the sheriff's post, in a race that centered largely on the aftermath of a high-profile school shooting from 2018.
Gov. Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisSchools without mask mandate 3.5 times more likely to have COVID-19 outbreaks: CDC study Texas limits business with Ben & Jerry's over Israel move Overnight Health Care — Presented by Indivior — CDC panel approves boosters for some, but not based on jobs MORE (R) removed Israel from the sheriff's post in 2019 over his handling of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which left 17 dead. DeSantis tapped Tony to take over as the county's first Black sheriff.
Tony issued a statement declaring victory Tuesday night.
"The Democratic voters of Broward County have spoken and I am deeply honored that they have chosen me to lead the Broward Sheriff's Office into a brighter, safer future! I promise BSO will become the national model for how a public safety agency can be run," he said in a statement.
Tony defeated Israel 37 to 35 percent with 99 percent of precincts reporting, according to CBS Miami.
"I want the people to know I poured my heart and soul into being sheriff," Israel said in a statement. "My main focus was keeping kids out of jail. I may not be the sheriff, but I have the best family in the world and I look forward to spending time with them."
Tony will go up against Republican H. Wayne Clark in November. The Democrat is heavily favored to retain his post in the reliably blue district.
The suspect behind the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, 21-year-old Nikolas Cruz, faces the death penalty if convicted.