What to Know
- Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie filed a motion Friday to dismiss a perjury charge against him
- Runcie was arrested Wednesday, with authorities saying the perjury charge was related to his testimony before a grand jury
- Runcie's motion said the indictment against him doesn't specify which statement Runcie allegedly made that is the basis for the charge
Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie has filed a motion to dismiss a perjury charge against him.
Runcie was arrested Wednesday by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement on a felony charge of perjury in an official proceeding. He was booked into jail and released.
FDLE officials said the charge against Runcie is related to his testimony before a statewide grand jury that was empaneled to investigate possible failures in following school-related safety laws and mismanaging funds solicited for school safety initiatives, as well as the district’s construction bond program. The indictment against Runcie gave no particulars about the alleged falsehood.
The grand jury was empaneled following the Feb. 14, 2018, shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that took the lives of 17 students and staff.
According to Runcie's motion to dismiss filed on Friday, Runcie testified before the grand jury on March 31 and April 1.
The motion argues that the FDLE indictment doesn't specify which statement Runcie allegedly made that is the basis for the charge.
"The indictment even fails to specify during which of the two days of Mr. Runcie's testimony the statement is alleged to be made," Runcie's motion reads.
If the motion to dismiss isn't granted, Runcie is seeking a "statement of particulars" which would give more details about the alleged perjury.
To prove perjury, prosecutors must show Runcie knew his statements to the grand jury were false and not just a mistake.
Attorneys for Runcie, 59, released a statement Wednesday afternoon saying he plans to plead not guilty.
“We are confident that he will be exonerated and he intends to continue to carry out his responsibilities with the highest level of integrity and moral standards, as he has done for nearly ten years in his role as Superintendent,” the statement said.
Also arrested Wednesday was Barbara Myrick, the school district’s attorney. Myrick, 72, is accused of unlawfully disclosing grand jury proceedings, a felony. Her indictment also didn't disclose details. It was unclear whether she has an attorney who could comment.
One Broward administrator was previously arrested on charges that he rigged contracts with vendors and accepted bribes. He has pleaded not guilty.
The Broward School Board announced it will discuss the fates of Runcie and Myrick during its already scheduled workshop meeting on Tuesday.
“What I’m focused on is just having Board discussion in the public to address this issue,” said Board Chair Dr. Rosalind Osgood.
Osgood says Board members will talk about, and possibly vote on, what to do about the superintendent and the Board’s attorney.
According to his contract, the Board could fire Runcie, he could resign, they could come to a separation agreement, or he could continue to serve under indictment.