Suspect Identified in 3rd Deadliest School Shooting in US

Parents wait for news after a reports of a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Joel Auerbach)

The suspect in the deadliest school shooting in Broward County’s history and the third deadliest in the U.S. is 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz. He is alive and in custody and is being held in an undisclosed location. Broward Sheriff Scott Israel said that Cruz began shooting outside the school armed with an AR-15-style rifle, wearing a school uniform, a gas mask and launching smoke grenades pulled the fire alarm and opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School around 2:30 yesterday.

The suspect, a former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, had been expelled for disciplinary reasons, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said.

The sheriff said Cruz allegedly started shooting outside the school and made his way inside and kept unloading his semi-automatic AR-15 assault rifle with “countless magazines.”

Florida Senator Bill Nelson says the suspect wore a gas mask, launched several smoke grenades and pulled the fire alarm before he began shooting.

Sheriff Israel confirms that the shooting left 17 people dead and 15 hospitalized. Twelve victims were confirmed dead at the school and the unidentified bodies remained there lying on the bloody floor well into Wednesday night, according to BSO.

Jillian Davis says she was in JROTC class with Cruz, at the High School in Parkland.

He was described as a loner who was upset by the recent death of his mother.

“We were told last year that he wasn’t allowed on campus with a backpack on him,” Jim Gard, who claimed to be a former teacher of the suspect’s, told the Herald. “There were problems with him last year threatening students, and I guess he was asked to leave campus.”

The Miami Herald is reporting Cruz had been previously flagged by teachers as a campus threat. The Broward School Superintendent Robert Runcie said he was not aware of any red flags with regarding Cruz.

The Broward County Sheriff’s office provided the active shooter training and a law enforcement officer is assigned to every school in the district, Korn said. All schools have a single point of entry to control who enters the building.

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