Suspected Gunman Nikolas Cruz Lived With Student in Months Leading up to Florida School Shooting, Attorney Says

The suspected gunman in the Florida school shooting lived with a student at the high school for the last three months.

Nikolas Cruz, the suspect in the deadly mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida was living in a mobile home with a student for the past three months, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported.

Cruz and his brother, who had been adopted at birth by Lynda and Roger Cruz, had allegedly been living with a family friend in Palm Beach County after their adoptive mother died of pneumonia on Nov. 1. Unhappy with the living situation, the 19-year-old asked if he could move in with his friend's family.

The family allowed Cruz to move in around Thanksgiving, giving him a room and encouraging him to attend adult education class. They say that they were aware that Cruz had an AR-15, but they made him keep it in a locked gun cabinet, Cruz's attorney, Jim Lewis, said. The family stated that they had never seen Cruz shooting the assault rifle, which authorities confirmed he had legally purchased, but that they did see him shooting a pellet gun in the backyard.

"The family is devastated, they didn't see this coming. They took him in and it's a classic case of no good deed goes unpunished," Lewis said. "He was a little quirky and he was depressed about his mom's death, but who wouldn't be?"


Cruz is now charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder after he entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where he had been expelled last year, just before dismissal armed with an AR-15, several magazines of ammunition, a gas mask, and smoke grenades. He is alleged to have pulled the fire alarm before opening fire as students poured into the hallways.

The shooting left 17 students and an adult dead and 15 injured, marking the third deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.