A day after a nineteen-year-old left seventeen students and faculty dead and fourteen more injured at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the man who did it will be held in custody without bond. Nikolas Cruz, the former student who was expelled from Marjory Stoneman, had a troubling past including comments on social media sites saying he was “going to be a professional school shooter”. He purchased and took pictures with firearms repeatedly on social media prior to the shooting. His expulsion came on the heels of a fight with a student who was the current boyfriend of his ex-girlfriend, and his adoptive mother’s death in November of 2017 was another major event in his recent past. Cruz had been receiving treatment at a local mental health facility in the months leading up to Wednesday’s rampage, and the family he had been living with since his mother’s death said he was quiet and respectful, but sad during the past months. Cruz has confessed to the murders he committed and all associated actions.
Investigations into the shooting will likely continue for some time, and the conversations on how to prevent similar events are beginning across the country. Florida Governor Rick Scott said in a press conference early on Thursday that he would be speaking with state leaders to work on how to keep guns out of the hands of those with mental illness. President Trump also gave a speech in response to the tragedy, calling for increased support for those with mental health issues to try to prevent further shootings. Robert Runcie, the superintendent of Broward County Public Schools also spoke Thursday morning, commending the heroism of faculty member Aaron Feis – a football coach at Marjory Stoneman Douglas who bravely stood in front of students to protect them from gunfire and died doing so. Investigations will likely continue for some time as this community attempts to find answers in the wake of this shooting.