Miami News

There have been new developments in the Parkland shooter's penalty trial

Parkland Shooter Nikolas Cruz stands on trial for his brutal act of violence, killing 17 people

Nikolas Cruz, aka the Parkland Shooter, is awaiting the second phase of his trial to begin as juror selection starts. The penalty phase of his trial has been expected to last for up to 6 months, given the complications and complexities of the case, the tough process of selecting an impartial jury, and deciding between a life sentence or the death penalty.

The latest Parkland shooter issue during juror selection and the trial

The issue arose when one of the selected jurors began cursing at Cruz upon seeing him in person, which led to deputies and sheriffs protecting him from the threat. This was necessary because a single instigator could lead to various others reacting adversely and following suit. However, it also leads to the dismissal of the entire 11-person jury.

An empty courtroom set up for a hearing.

What the defense is pushing for instead of the death penalty

As a result of the judge's dismissal of the jury and alternates and restarting of the selection process, the defense insists that the judge let go of the death penalty altogether and focus on 34 consecutive life sentences instead.  

This is an error on Judge Scherer's part, as she dismissed the 11 jurors without questioning their ability to remain impartial and obey the law. If she disallows further probing and questioning, the death penalty may be off the table.

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