Cruz, 23, likewise pleaded guilty come 17 counts of attempted murder in connection with the most dangerous high school shooting in current U.S. History.

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Nikolas Cruz pleaded guilty Wednesday come 17 counts of murder and also 17 counts of attempted murder, more than three years after ~ gunning down 14 students and three employee members in ~ Marjory Stoneman Douglas High college in Parkland, Florida.

Circuit referee Elizabeth Scherer detailed that the killing counts that pleaded guilty to lug a obligated minimum sentence the life in prison v no parole.

Cruz, 23, and also his lawyers last week surprised Scherer and also prosecutors when they announced he planned come plead guilty to every 34 counts.

Also during last week"s hearing, the gunman pleaded guilty to 4 charges the he confronted after he struck a Broward county Jail guard nine months after ~ the shooting.

In a rushed statement come the court Wednesday, a tremble Cruz apologized because that his crimes.

“I am very sorry because that what i did and also I have to live through it every day," he said. “I need to live v this every day, and also it bring me nightmares that i can’t live through myself sometimes yet I try to push through."


'I can't live through myself': Nikolas Cruz addresses court after pleading guilty to Parkland shooting

Oct. 20, 202101:05
The instance will now go directly to a punish phase, to determine if he should face the death penalty. Jury an option is collection to start on Jan. 4.

In a statement, March because that Our Lives, a group formed by Parkland college student activists to support for tighter gun laws, said it had actually no discuss the gunman and that they would "never dignify that by introduce to his name."

But the team said: "A single guilty plea walk not carry closure as lengthy as the is still feasible for an additional person everywhere in this country to it is in murdered by a gun at school, in a location of worship, or in their an extremely own home."

David Hogg, a previous Stoneman Douglas high school student and also March for Our stays co-founder, claimed he drew small satisfaction from the convictions versus the gunman.

"Ultimately over there is no closure, in that our classmates are never ever coming back, our teacher are never ever coming back," Hogg called MSNBC"s "Andrea Mitchell Reports" on Wednesday afternoon.

"The closest thing to closure that i know numerous of my classmates and also I can even think of is creating a world, a country, in i m sorry our children don"t need to be born into a instance where they live in danger of total violence."

In court Wednesday, the gunman answered a series of concerns from Scherer, reflecting that he interpreted the court proceedings.

Scherer reminded him the in pleading guilty to all charges, his best-case scenario would be to die in prison.

"Life in prison method the hatchet of her life," she said. "It way you will certainly not come out until you room no longer alive."

The gunman said he understood.

The convicted killer stand silently, spring down with slumped shoulders, together the details that the shooting were read in court through Broward county State attorney Michael Satz.

Bringing an abrupt finish to the guilt step of the proceedings to be a wise choice by the gunman"s lawyers who desire to conserve their customer from execution, veteran Miami defense attorney Phil Reizenstein said.

With no doubt the Cruz pulled the trigger in killing all 17 human being that day, enduring a ache trial wouldn"t have actually helped the defense, follow to Reizenstein.

“Why go with that and lose a little advantage we can obtain of saying he’s remorseful, he’s embraced responsibility, wants to preventive the families," the told NBC south Florida ~ above Wednesday.

“That’s the more than likely only the advantage they saw, for this reason they realized they had to take it. They did this ~ 3½ years of preparation, for this reason you can not say the decision was rushed.”

Tony Montalto, the dad of victim Gina Montalto, and also other parental of victims established Stand with Parkland, which requirements responsible pistol laws, school security enhancements and greater attention to students" mental health.

“Today we witnessed a cold and calculating killer confess come the murder of my daughter Gina and 16 other innocent victims at your school,” the said. “His guilty pleas room the first step in the judicial process but over there is no change for my family. Our bright, beautiful, and also beloved daughter Gina is gone while she killer quiet enjoys the blessing that life in prison.”

Trial delays

The trial has been delay by the pandemic and arguments over witnesses and also evidence.

Armed through an AR-15, the gunman landed on Marjory Stoneman Douglas in an Uber, just prior to classes were end on Valentine"s work 2018. He eliminated 17 people and also wounded 17 an ext in what ended up being the deadliest high college shooting in recent U.S. History.

Then 19, he had been expelled from the institution the vault year.

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He confessed to the attack, informing investigators the had carried the weapon and also several invited magazines stuffed right into a backpack and also planned to leave them behind in an effort to blend in through fleeing students, follow to a police affidavit.