A sentencing trial for the 2018 Parkland high school shooting that killed 17 people begins Monday in Florida. The defendants face either the death penalty or life imprisonment.
The choice of 12 jurors took three months, seven men and five women were deemed impartial enough to determine the fate of the defendant, Nicholas Cruz, 23, who was 19 years old when he was shot on February 14, 2018 at a high school in Parkland, State Florida, which he had previously visited, used an assault rifle legally purchased a year ago, killing 17 people and injuring 15 people.
In October, Nicholas Cruz pleaded guilty to 17 counts of murder (killing 14 students and three adults) and 17 attempts on each of the 17 wounded, saying he was “sorry.”
Nicholas Cruz’s lawyers are expected to use the argument that their client is mentally ill and claim that he has already apologized.
The prosecution will focus on the premeditated nature of the crime, citing a video clip filmed before the shooting in which Cruz said: “Let my massacre begin today. All the frightened children run and hide.”