Judge rejects motion against death penalty in Parkland killing perpetrator case

Judge Elizabeth Scherer, in charge of the case of Nikolas Cruz, the young man who declared himself the author of the shooting deaths of 17 people in a Parkland (Florida) high school in 2018, rejected on Monday a defense motion that asked to testify "unconstitutional" the death penalty for the perpetrator of the massacre.

At a hearing in Fort Lauderdale (southeastern Florida), Judge Scherer dismissed Cruz’s defense arguments and indicated that the court does not have the authority to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision on the death penalty issue.

Cruz’s defense also asked the judge to exclude evidence related to two search warrants related to a Pompano Beach home where Cruz had lived and the cell phone he used on the day of the shooting.

With the guilty plea, the defense team hopes to avoid the death penalty for its client in exchange for being sentenced to 17 life terms in prison.

Cruz, who was present at the hearing last October, pleaded guilty, one by one, to killing 14 students and 3 staff members at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in southeast Florida on February 14, 2018.

The next hearing is scheduled for the beginning of December and a month later, a jury of 12 people will be selected that will be in charge of recommending the sentence before the judge, who will have the final word on Cruz’s death sentence or life sentence. 23 years.

The Broward County State Attorney’s Office, north of Miami, has indicated since the massacre that it would seek capital punishment and has also clarified that it has not negotiated the matter with the defense.

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