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Shooting suspect indicted on 17 murder counts

by Lynde Langdon
Posted 3/07/18, 04:47 pm

A grand jury indicted Florida school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz on Wednesday on 17 counts of first-degree murder, meaning he could face the death penalty if convicted. Cruz’s public defender has said the 19-year-old would plead guilty if prosecutors offered a life sentence instead of the death penalty. The Broward County state attorney has not announced a decision on the death penalty yet. Cruz is accused in the Feb. 14 massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., in which 17 people died and more than a dozen others were injured. Jail records released by the Broward Sheriff’s Office showed Cruz was being kept in solitary confinement. The report said he “often sits with a blank stare,” appeared to laugh, exhibited “awkward” behavior during and after a visit with an attorney, and had one “family visit.” U.S. Education Secretary Betsy De Vos visited the high school Wednesday and told reporters she wanted to hear suggestions from students on how to improve school safety.

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Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital assistant editor and reports on popular and fine arts. She lives in Wichita, Kan., with her husband and two daughters. Follow Lynde on Twitter @lmlangdon.

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