A Bloody Valentine’s Day: Stoneman Douglas High School devastated by Mass Shooting

Leo Veizaga, Staff Writer

This year’s Valentine’s Day began with a shock, as a massive school shooting occurred in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were killed by an ex-student identified as 19 year old Nikolas Cruz. After initial news of the situation broke out, it left many people asking the obvious questions: who is the shooter? Why would he do such a thing? Where were his parents? How could the shooter’s parents let this happen? As a staff writer for the Jagwire, I’ve done my best to collect as much information about this topic as possible. Below are all the details that I have collected on the Florida school shooting.


Suspect Nikolas Cruz was allegedly dropped off by an Uber driver at his former high school in the afternoon on Valentine’s Day, before he proceeded to execute another one of the deadliest mass shootings in American history with his legally purchased AR-15 assault rifle. Throughout the entire time that the shooter was active, 17 people were brutally killed. After the deadly massacre, Cruz allegedly walked out with other students seeking safety, stopped by a Subway restaurant to buy a soda, and later entered a McDonald’s in Coral Springs. Cruz was then recognized on security footage and arrested afterwards.


Concerning Cruz’s past as a student, he was expelled from Stoneman Douglas High for undisclosed disciplinary reasons. One student who attends SDHS told the Herald that Cruz had at least partially been kicked out for bringing bullets in his backpack onto the school premises. Cruz was attending another school in Broward County after his expulsion. Victoria Olvera, a student at the school, told USA Today that Cruz had ultimately been expelled after a fight with his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend. She also said that Cruz had been abusive to his girlfriend.


Cruz had also been identified as a potential threat to his classmates a year earlier. His former math teacher, Jim Gard, told the Herald, “We were told last year that he wasn’t allowed on campus with a backpack on him. There were problems with him last year threatening students, and I guess he was asked to leave campus.” However, superintendent Robert Runcie told reporters, “We received no warnings. Potentially there could have been signs out there. But we didn’t have any warning or phone calls or threats that were made.”


Cruz later confessed to committing his crimes, according to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, and has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.