Parkland school shooter placed on suicide watch

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Parkland school shooter has been using his own blood to draw and write on the wall of his cell in Broward County Jail.

During her opening statement on Monday, Assistant Public Defender Melisa McNeill made a vague reference to Cruz’s disturbing behavior. It was a sign that this matter would be brought up when the defense makes its case in an effort to save his life.

Monday’s public release of records includes 30 pages of Cruz’s drawings. These actions were seen by deputies as symptomatic threats of homicidal and suicidal thoughts, and in May, he was placed on suicide watch.

In October, Cruz entered a guilty plea to 17 counts of murder and 17 counts of attempted murder for the attack that took place at Marjory Stoneman Douglas on Valentine’s Day in 2018. Prosecutors advocating for the death penalty rested their case on Aug. 4.

To prevent the defendant from being sentenced to death, the defense only has to convince one juror because in order for him to be put to death, the jury’s decision had to be unanimous. Otherwise, Cruz will be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Alfred Duncan

Alfred Duncan is a senior editor at The South Florida Daily, where he oversees our coverage of politics, misinformation, health and economics. Alfred is a former reporter and editor for BuzzFeed News, National Geographic and USA Today.

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