This past Valentine’s day, one of the deadliest school shootings took place in Parkland, Florida at Stoneman Douglas High School. The young adult Nikolas Cruz, 19, opened fire on his previous schoolmates around 2 p.m. during school hours. According to Suspect Confessed to Police That He Began Shooting Students ‘in the Hallways’, by Julie Turkewitz, Patricia Mazzei, and Audra D.S. Burch, Nickolas Cruz shot inside five different classrooms in the freshmen building (NY Times). Once he was finished with his rampage, he tried to abandon his assault rifle and flee the scene with the remaining panicked children. After a couple of hours, Nikolas Cruz was arrested and taken into custody. To read the rest of the article click HERE.
From the legal standpoint, this individual is going to be serving a very long sentence. As of his first court appearance, which took place over the previous week, the judge read and explained that Nickolas Cruz is facing 17 counts of premeditated murder during his Arraignment. Now, in this case, the best-case scenario for Mr. Cruz is to be sentenced to prison for life without parole. However, according to the state laws of Florida, Florida Statutes Section 782.02-782.36, first-degree murder can lead down to the possibilities of two solutions. The first (mentioned earlier), is that Mr. Cruz would receive life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. The second is that Mr. Cruz could be facing a death penalty sentencing. Whatever decision is made by the jury, both options will serve justice for this heinous crime.
This shooting has become the 18th school shooting in America, and we have barely reached the end of the second month this year. Our society has sat back for 18 school shooting this year and haven’t taken any affirmative action to prevent future shootings. Sitting and grieving is understandable but forgetting the problem and moving forward without some form of action makes matter much worse. It had become a trend, to not face gun violence problems because a collective conscience thought is that nothing would be accomplished in regard to gun control. However, when solving a problem, the two steps to getting to a solution is to recognize the problem and address the problem. For this reason, A group of students from Stoneman Douglas High school and other schools in Florida, have taken on town hall meetings, marched, and protested that their voices need to be heard and schools around the nation need to be protected. It has taken a group of young teenagers to shed light on an entire nation that something needs to be done in regard to gun violence.
The problem is not the second amendment. The problem is not the banning of all firearms. The problem is that it has taken over 200 school shootings (18 this year) to address gun violence. Now that the problem has been addressed, a solution can be formed. Oregon has taken the first step as a state to ban the possession of firearms for anyone who is convicted of domestic abuse. It may or may not be a good solution, but it is a step in the right direction. We have to be better as a community, society, and nation to make sure that we create a collective conscience and help remove this plague of gun violence from this country.
Visit our website to read more about criminal law.