Florida school shooting suspect identified as Nicholas Cruz
The 18-year-old suspected shooter is a former student of marjory Stoneman Douglas high School, who allegedly was obsessed with guns.
The suspected shooter was arrested in connection with Wednesday’s shooting at a Florida high school, which at least 17 people dead, was identified by the sheriff as a 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz.
The suspect, a former student at marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in parkland, was expelled for disciplinary reasons, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said. A former classmate told Fox News Wednesday night, she recognized the suspected gunman as an employee at a dollar store.
#BREAKING: Very clear image of the suspect captured by police @wsvn pic.twitter.com/v4AiyIFFs1
— Franklin White (@FranklinWSVN) February 15, 2018
While some teachers said he showed warning signs, Superintendent Robert Runcie said he was not aware of any specific warnings, the school district had received regarding the shooter.
A Instagram page apparently belonging to Cruz showed pictures of guns and knives. The sheriff’s office said Wednesday that the suspect was carrying an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and multiple magazines.
A student told WJXT that “everyone predicted” the shooting, several people were killed, police said.
“To be honest, a lot of people said that it was gonna be him,” the unnamed student told the news station. He said that children joked that the student would be the one to “shoot up the school.”
“It turns out, everyone predicted,” the student said, adding that the suspect knew the layout of the school.
“Everybody predicted it,” one student said about the #Park to shoot. pic.twitter.com/mbzBIw8iUa
— Vic Micolucci WJXT (@WJXTvic) February 14, 2018
“Yes, he was on the third floor. He knows the school’s layout, he knows where everyone would be as now,” the student said. “He is with us in a fire drill, he is ready for this kind of things.”
Another student told WSVN that the suspect was a “difficult boy” who is “always a certain amount of business going on.”
“He shot guns, because he felt it gave him, I think, an exhilarating feeling,” the unnamed student added.
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Jim Gard, who said that he was Cruz the teacher around August and September 2016, told Fox News that he was not at all shocked to hear that his former student’s name circling around.
“It hit me like wow. … Am I shocked? No, I hate to say it,” Gard said. “Nothing is shocking anymore. And that’s terrible.”
Gard told the Miami Herald that Cruz was seen as a potential threat in the past, when he allegedly threatened students last year.
“We were told last year that he would not be allowed on the campus with a backpack on him,” the teacher said. “There were problems last year with him threatening students, and I think he was asked to leave the campus.”
Another student told WSVN that he is preserved from [the suspect], most of the time.”
Suspect’s former teacher reacts on Florida shooting rampage at a school
“My time in alternative school, I did not want him in, because I didn’t want to cause a conflict with him, because the impression he gave off,” the student said of the shooter.
Mike Watford, who graduated from the high school in 2016, told BuzzFeed News that “something which certainly pushed [the defendant]” before he allegedly opened fire at the school on Wednesday.
Cruz, according to Watford, often said: “how tired he was of everyone picking on him and the staff will do nothing about it.”
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Watford, the brother of Giovanni, described Cruz to the news outlet as “a vague child,” who was “off” and “super tense the whole time, and talked about guns a lot and tried to hide his face.”
Wednesday’s shooting at marjory Stoneman Douglas high School was the 25 deadly shooting at an AMERICAN elementary school, junior high or high school, since — and including — Columbine in 1999. There are a combined 98 deaths as a result.
Nicole Darrah cover breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.