Despite her numerous newsmaking blunders, Broward Mayor Barbara Sharief loves basking in media spotlight. Her latest headline grabbing comments came last night on WPLG Local 10 News when Sharief declared an arrest would be made in the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport terror attack surveillance video leak investigation. Over the weekend, TMZ published a short clip of video showing Esteban Santiago shooting at passengers in Fort Lauderdale.
Sharief claimed the publication of the video could give rise to “copycats.” In an interview with Channel 10, Sharief claimed a “high ranking official” would soon face arrest for leaking the video. Sharief said the official was not in the FBI or Broward County government, implying some association with local law enforcement.
On Tuesday, Sharief did her best Sherlock Holmes impression, telling WFOR CBS 4 that a “reflection” in video revealed the uniform of the official.
For her sake, let’s hope this “high ranking” official is named soon. Sharief’s batting average on these investigative scoops is very poor.
Here are some of her greatest hits (incorrect statements in bold):
CNN The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer(1/6/17)
BARBARA SHARIEF, BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA, MAYOR: OK. At this time, Wolf, there has not been any updates in terms of what the motivation of the suspect is. What I can tell you is that there has been quite a bit of information that has been given out, and law enforcement right now is really concerned about misinformation, particularly with the identification of the suspect. They are reverifying that, because, at this point in time, there are some things about that that are not checking out.
BLITZER: Like what, for example? We want to be as accurate as possible, Mayor. Tell us what the problems are.
SHARIEF: In terms of the name itself, that may not be the appropriate or accurate information.
SHARIEF: Yes. So what they’re trying to do is identify and confirm that, yes, that is in fact the person that they do have in custody.I can tell you that he was taken alive. He is not injured. He did surrender to the personnel that was on scene during the shooting.
BLITZER: So, in other words, he may have had identification, some sort of I.D. identifying him as Esteban Santiago, formerly a member of the Alaskan National Guard, but it may be false I.D., he may actually be someone else? Is that what I’m hearing from you, Mayor?</em
CNN Anderson Cooper 360 (1/6/17)
COOPER: “I want to ask you, Mayor, about something you said on CNN earlier. I understand there are some things you can’t talk about. But I hear you mentioned this one to CNN earlier, that authorities were trying to re-verify the identity of the shooter. Have they been able to do that as far as you know? Is the shooter in fact this man who’s been identified?”
SHARIEF: Once the FBI took over the investigation they asked me not to comment on that any further. And so, they’re doing their due diligence at this time. What I can tell you is that we were told that that was not something that they were 100 percent sure of about all his identifying attributes and they are going to continue to investigate that.
CNN Don Lemon (1/6/17)
DON LEMON: Was there any sort of altercation on that flight from Minneapolis to Fort Lauderdale?
BARBARA SHARIEF: There were reports that there was some form of altercation with this gentleman on the flight and that it was de-escalated and there was no need for any further action.</em>
CNN Newsroom (1/7/17)
BROWN: “But do you know if he has been to Florida before? What his involvement has been in your state, in your city?”
SHARIEF: “In previous reports that I have been privy to and I’ve heard that they have said that he had some connections here in South Florida and that he had been here before.”
BROWN: “And I just want to recap as we wrap up this segment because I know you’re very busy, mayor. You had mentioned earlier that the gunman had visited the area before. Can you just tell us again what you know about that, his prior visits?”
SHARIEF: “The only thing that I can tell you is that they said that he had some contact here in terms of family members and that he had been here previously and in the past and in the recent past.”
BROWN: “To Fort Lauderdale, specifically, correct?”
SHARIEF: “And the Miami area.”
BROWN: “The Miami area. And you said the recent past and this is what law enforcement has told you, correct.”