Baldwin County, Ala. officials refuse to lower flags to honor victims of Orlando mass shooting

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The flags outside WHNT News 19, at the corner of Church Street and Holmes Avenue, are lowered to half staff.

WASHINGTON (CNN) — Officials in an Alabama county refused to lower flags to half-staff to honor the victims of the Orlando mass shooting this week even after President Barack Obama and Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley ordered flags to be lowered.

Citing the U.S. Flag Code, Baldwin County Commissioner Tucker Dorsey told CNN affiliate WPMI that while his “heart certainly goes out to the victims and their families,” the incident “doesn’t meet the test of the reason for the flag to be lowered.”

Dorsey added that the code states that the flag is to be lowered on Memorial Day and to commemorate the deaths of government officials.

In a Facebook post published Tuesday, Dorsey wrote that Baldwin County also didn’t lower the flags after the Paris terror attacks in November and the shooting in San Bernardino, California, in December by a married couple who pledged allegiance to ISIS.

Baldwin County is located along the Mobile Bay and Gulf of Mexico shores and includes the popular tourist destination Orange Beach.

Obama ordered the flags to be flown at half-staff Sunday following the mass shooting at Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, early Sunday that left 49 dead and 53 injured.

“I realize that the President and governor may make the order, but I believe and interpret their order inconsistent with the adopted flag code,” Dorsey told the New York Daily News.