Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (AP) – Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz A psychologist calmly told why Valentine’s Day was chosen to massacre 17 people Four years ago at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland: Because no one loved him, he wanted to ruin the holidays forever for anyone associated with the school.
After prosecutors played a video clip from jailhouse interviews with his psychologist, it bolstered their case that he was not motivated to kill by a mental disorder he could not control, but chose to plan and carry out the attack. It’s out.
They are trying to convince jurors to sentence Cruz, 24, to death on February 14, 2018. Massacre at suburban Fort Lauderdale school. He confessed to the crime a year ago. For the former Stoneman Douglas student to receive the death penalty, a jury of seven men and five women must be unanimous. Otherwise the sentence will be life imprisonment without parole.
Cruise’s attorneys argued throughout the trial that his birth mother was a heavy drinker During pregnancy, he was diagnosed with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, which caused brain dysfunction that led to a lifetime of paranoid episodes. Disorganized and sometimes violent Conduct that resulted in firing. After several attempts blocked by Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer, she was able to tell jurors Thursday that Cruz believes she was raped and sexually abused by a neighbor when she was 9 years old.
Robert Denny, a Missouri neuropsychologist testifying for the prosecution, interviewed and tested Cruz over three days last March – under Florida law, prosecutors can conduct their own testing if defense attorneys argue their client is mentally retarded.
Denny had already testified He believes that Cruise intentionally performed poorly on the tests in an attempt to simulate severe brain dysfunction. On Thursday, he reiterated his belief that Cruz does not have a fetal alcohol problem, but rather antisocial personality disorder — in layman’s terms, he is a sociopath.
He said Cruz understands reality and can control his actions when it suits him. Antisocial personality disorder is distinguished from schizophrenia or delusions, where the person acts on delusional thoughts that they cannot control.
Assistant Prosecutor Jeff Marcus played two videos from Denny’s interviews with Cruz. In the first, Cruz describes his torture of animals As with frogs and lizards in childhood, a problem that has been raised many times.
“I burned them, I tortured them, I skinned them alive, I shot them,” Cruz said emotionlessly. “I’ll play with their dead bodies or I’ll eat them.”
In the second video, Denny asks Cruz as he wraps up his second and final interview, “Is there anything important I’m not asking you?” asking that.
Cruz thought for about 10 seconds, then responded, “Why I chose Valentine’s Day.” He then explained.
“Because I thought no one would love me,” Cruz said. “I didn’t like Valentine’s Day, I wanted to ruin it for everyone.” Soft gasps rose from the victim’s parents and relatives in the courtroom.
“You mean the family members of the murdered children?” Denny asked.
“No, for school,” Cruz replied. Never vacation there again, he said.
Marcus then read the names of the 17 victims, and after each asked Denny if fetal alcohol syndrome could explain why Cruz killed that person. No, Denny answered 17 times.
Under cross-examination by defense attorney Casey Secor, Denny admitted that Cruz had said in their interviews that he had memories of being molested and raped by a three-year-old neighbor. It was an issue the defense wanted to raise several times, but Judge Scherer ruled that there were only three people available who could corroborate the allegations. Cruz’s adoptive mother, Linda Cruz, died months before the shooting, and the rapist and mother no longer live in the United States and cannot be compelled to appear as witnesses.
In video clips played for the jury, Cruz told Denny his mother tried to convince him the molestation never happened, but was 75% to 80% sure it was. He said the older boy would say he could play video games if he was allowed to torture him.
Closing arguments are on Tuesday. Discussions will begin from Wednesday.