August 18, 2022

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If the dying penalty prevents college shootings, it ‘carries with me’

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The seek for the group of Broward County residents who will resolve in courtroom whether or not Nikolas Cruz must be executed for his crimes continued Tuesday in Fort Lauderdale. The 5 members of Cruz’s protection have been all in attendance after being absent because of COVID-19.

Cruz, 23, was 19 when he shot lifeless 34 victims with an AR-15 rifle at Marjory Stoneman Douglas Excessive College on February 14, 2018. In October, after years of delays, he pleaded responsible to 17 counts of homicide and 17 counts of tried homicide. Jury choice started on April 4th.

Circuit Decide Elizabeth Scherer wants 18 to twenty jurors – 12 within the jury field and alternates. A whole lot of jurors answered questions arduous excuses. The narrowing down of the jury pool continued with the person interviews. The primary questions centered on dying penalty.


A potential juror with expertise in social psychology introduced her problem to the courtroom:

“If imposition of the dying penalty may deter one other mass assassin from doing so, it will carry some weight to me as as to whether that will be a cause to say sure to the dying penalty.

“However, does it make sense to develop the physique of an already horrific homicide? However that’s once you speak about weighing. For me it will come right down to: The place does it take advantage of sense to impose essentially the most absolute punishment you may give somebody.”

Assistant District Lawyer Jeff Marcus needed her to stay within the jury pool.

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“She made it very clear that she would hearken to any proof,” Marcus mentioned.

Assistant Public Defender Melisa McNeill needed her out.

“She would add weight to an illegal aggravator,” McNeill mentioned in reference to the impression the punishment of others.


Scherer sided with the jury with the prosecution.

“I completely disagree on whether or not it will probably’t be truthful and neutral,” Scherer mentioned. “I believe she completely can.”

The continued interviews additionally enable the attorneys to collect data to allow them to greatest resolve easy methods to use their ten possibilities to clear potential jurors.

Lawyer David S Weinsteina companion at Jones Walker LLP who has been prosecuting the case mentioned the courtroom mustn’t rush the method.

“All of us need a closure: the neighborhood, the households of the victims, everybody affected. However to have the clasp that actually holds, it’s important to take your time,” Weinstein mentioned. “You need to let the method run its course and do your greatest to keep away from making errors that escalate to the extent of a reversal and make us undergo this once more.”


Cruz’s protection filed a movement to postpone the trial, arguing that the Might 24 college taking pictures in Uvalde, Texas would make it unimaginable for Cruz to get a good jury. An 18-year-old gunman, additionally armed with an AR-15 rifle, killed 19 college students and two lecturers and wounded 17 others.

For Cruz to be sentenced to dying, all 12 jurors should agree. In any other case, Scherer has no alternative however to condemn him to life imprisonment with out the potential for parole.

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Scherer introduced that jury choice will resume Wednesday at 8:15 a.m.

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Copyright 2022 by WPLG – All rights reserved. If the dying penalty prevents college shootings, it ‘carries with me’