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Parkland school killer officially sentenced to life in prison

Scherer had no other choice; the jury in Cruz’s three-month trial voted 9 to 3 on October 13 to sentence him to death, but Florida law requires unanimity for that sentence to be handed down.

The sentencing came after two days of parents, wives, siblings and other relatives of the slain victims and some of the injured survivors marching to a 20ft lectern to address him face to face.

The judge commended the families and injured who testified, calling them strong, graceful and patient.

“I know you’re fine, because you got yourself,” Scherer said.

Some parents and other family members cried as she read. When she finished and Cruz was led out of the courtroom, a father mumbled “Good riddance”.

Cruz, 24, will be taken to the Florida Correctional System treatment center near Miami in a few days before being assigned to a maximum security prison. The families and the injured spent two days verbally beating Cruz, wishing him a painful death and lamenting that he could not be sentenced to death.

“Real justice would be served if every family here got a bullet and your AR-15 and we had to pick up straws, and each of us had to fire one at a time at you, making sure you felt every moment of it. , and your fear continued to build until the last family member who broke the camel’s back had the privilege of making sure they killed you,” said Linda Beigel Schulman, mother of the teacher killed Scott Beigel. “That’s real justice for you.”

Beigel Schulman said she was somewhat reassured knowing that Cruz will have to constantly worry about her safety for the rest of her life.

“From what I hear, child killers are very frowned upon and hated in prison,” Beigel Schulman told Cruz. “I rejoice in the day I was told that you were tortured and taken away for your cold-blooded, premeditated, calculated and heinous murders, because you deserve nothing less.”

David Alhadeff, Alyssa Alhadeff’s uncle, told Cruz via Zoom from his class in Maryland that he deserved “the opportunity to rot.”

“You deserve the opportunity to absorb the look of terror on your face once you leave this courtroom,” Alhadeff said. “You deserve the opportunity to know that justice will prevail at some point, causing you great anguish, minute by minute, day by day.”

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