CNN was granted access to an Instagram group message that contained Cruz and several other teenagers, all of which refused to confirm their identities to the outlet. Cruz was a member of the group since August 2017 and shared numerous disturbing thoughts with fellow members.
In one instance, he plainly admitted he was going to take lives.
"I think I am going to kill people," Cruz wrote.
A member of the chat told him not to say things like that, and Cruz backtracked and claimed he was joking.
However, it appears Cruz was not joking. On Wednesday, the mass murderer used an AR-15 semi-automatic weapon to kill 17 people at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
His motive for the murders is not yet clear, but he continually discussed his hatred for racial groups, expressed his desires to commit violence and showed off his weapon purchases in the group messages.
Cruz specifically said he hated "Jews, n—s, immigrants" and repeated other violent rhetoric about groups. He said he wanted to kill Mexicans, chain up and slit throats of black people and shoot gay people "in the back of head."
He also described those in interracial relationships as "traitors."
CNN also reports the mass murderer, who has admitted to killing the 17 people, claimed he hated black people because they were black and Jewish people because they "wanted to destroy the world."
His ant-Semitic views also extended to his family. He lashed out at his birth mother, who was apparently a member of the religion.
"My real mom was a Jew," Cruz wrote. "I am glad I never met her."
He also showed off firearms and accessories to fellow group members, who shared similar views as him.
Cruz posted a video of himself shooting a rifle out of a window, to which the other group members gave him critiques on the weapon. One person even recommended that Cruz purchase an after-market accessory that would have made his semi-automatic AR-15 weapon fully automatic.
The now-assailant, who is expected to plead guilty to the murders, also shared a selfie wearing body armor he recently purchased online at a discount. He had told the group beforehand he would be spending his $330 paycheck on the accessory.
Cruz then asked if he was allowed to wear the body armor to school. Another person in the group questioned his motives for wanting to wear the accessory to school. Cruz, who has already been expelled from Stoneman at the time, simply replied saying "school shooters."
He also shared messages about killing small animals.
Despite their shared bigotry, members of the group apparently knew something was not right about Cruz's mental stability.
"He seemed nice but also had some mental issues," one group member said. "All (I know) is that he likes guns and really hates liberals."