The suspect for the Parkland school shooting said he wants his impending $800,000 inheritance to go to an organization that will support the victims' family and "facilitate healing" in the community, his lawyer said Wednesday.
Nikolas Cruz, 19, is the beneficiary of his dead mother’s estate, and he’s due to inherit most of his trust fund over the next two years, according to WTVX Palm Beach. His mother died in November.
Cruz, who is indicted on 17 counts of premeditated murder in the first degree and 17 counts of attempted murder in the first degree, said he wants to give all of the money away.
“Mr. Cruz does not want those funds, whatever money that he is entitled to,” his attorney Melissa McNeill told a judge in a Broward County courtroom. “He would like that money donated to an organization that the victims’ family believes would be able to facilitate healing in our community or an opportunity to educate our community about the issues that have ripened over the last four or five months.”
Cruz is the lone suspect of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that left 17 people dead on Valentine's Day. The killing has sparked a nationwide movement for stronger gun control, led by several survivor students who are now focused on activism.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Cruz. His defense team has said Cruz will plead guilty and serve life in prison if it means avoiding an execution.
Cruz stood mute during his plea hearing last month, which means he refused to enter a plea. The judge entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf. One of his lawyers said this week that Cruz would plead guilty to save taxpayer dollars.
Police said Cruz snuck an AR-15 and magazines into his former high school and opened fire. Cruz admitted after his arrest to fleeing the campus on foot in the ensuing panic so that he would blend in with the crowd.
[Photo: Broward County Jail]
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