The suspected gunman arrested in connection with Wednesday’s shooting at a Florida high school which left at least 17 people dead, was identified by the sheriff as 19-year-old Nikolaus Cruz.
The suspect, a former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, had been expelled for disciplinary reasons, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said.
PARKLAND HIGH SCHOOL SHOOTING: AT LEAST 17 KILLED, SUSPECT IN CUSTODY, FLORIDA SHERIFF SAYS
While some teachers said he demonstrated warning signs, Superintendent Robert Runcie said he was not aware of any specific warnings the school district had received regarding the shooter.
An Instagram page apparently belonging to Cruz showed pictures of guns and knives. The sheriff’s office said Wednesday the suspect had an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and multiple magazines.
One student told WJXT that “everyone predicted” the shooting, which killed multiple people, according to police.
“Honestly, a lot of people were saying it was gonna be him,” the unnamed student told the news station. He said kids joked around that the student would be the one to “shoot up the school.”
More on the Parkland high school shooting…
“It turns out, everyone predicted it,” the student said, adding the suspect knew the layout of the school.
“Yeah, he was on the third floor. He knows the school layout, he knows where everyone would be at as of right now,” the student said. “He’s been with us in fire drills, he’s prepared for this stuff.”
Another student told WSVN that the suspect is a “troubled kid” who has “always had a certain amount of issues going on.”
“He shot guns because he felt it gave him, I guess, an exhilarating feeling,” the unnamed student added.
A teacher at the high school told the Miami Herald the suspect was seen as a potential threat in the past, as he allegedly threatened students last year.
“We were told last year that he wasn’t allowed on campus with a backpack on him,” Jim Gard, who claimed to be a former teacher of the suspect’s, told the Herald. “There were problems with him last year threatening students, and I guess he was asked to leave campus.”
Another student told WSVN he “stayed clear of [the suspect] most of the time.”
“My time in alternate school, I did not want to be with him at all because I didn’t want to cause any conflict with him, because of the impression he gave off,” the student said of the shooter.
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