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US Judge to determine if taxpayers should stop paying Nikolas Cruz's legal fees

13:47  11 april  2018
13:47  11 april  2018 Source:   cnn.com

Parkland shooting victim Anthony Borges criticizes sheriff's office and school district

  Parkland shooting victim Anthony Borges criticizes sheriff's office and school district FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla._Anthony Borges, among the most seriously wounded survivors of the Parkland school massacre, appeared at a news conference Friday evening with his father and denounced authorities for failing to prevent the shooting that left him with five bullet wounds. Wearing a black and orange Nike shirt that hung loosely on him, he was wheeled into a conference room at the Sheraton Suites in Plantation by his grandfather. Both legs, where he had received three bullet wounds, were propped up.He did not speak.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his public defender.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his public defender.

FT. LAUDERDALE - FEBRUARY 19: Nikolas Cruz appears in court for a status hearing before Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer on February 19, 2018 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Cruz is facing 17 charges of premeditated murder in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. (Photo by Mike Stocker-Pool/Getty Images) © Pool/Getty Images North America/Getty Images FT. LAUDERDALE - FEBRUARY 19: Nikolas Cruz appears in court for a status hearing before Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer on February 19, 2018 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Cruz is facing 17 charges of premeditated murder in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. (Photo by Mike Stocker-Pool/Getty Images)

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his defense.

Cruz killed 17 students and faculty at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on February 14 in one of the deadliest mass shootings in the US.

Nikolas Cruz: Letter asks judge to show mercy on Parkland shooter

  Nikolas Cruz: Letter asks judge to show mercy on Parkland shooter The latest in a string of letters sympathetic to the young man who shot and killed 17 people at a Florida high school asked the judge in the case to show mercy on Nikolas Cruz, calling the shooter "a vulnerable and disabled little boy inside a teenager's body." Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer included a three-page letter from a Minnesotan this week in the court record of Cruz, 19, who faces 17 counts of premeditated murder.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his public defender.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his defense.

Before the massacre, Cruz told a family he was living with that he was set to inherit $800,000 from his deceased parents when he turned 22.

Even if he gets access to the money several years from now, the Broward County public defender's office, which is representing him, could still get reimbursed.

Under Florida law, a public defender can charge a client even after the case is over, Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Scott Silverman told the Miami Herald.

"The public is still protected if he comes into money at some later time. The public defenders would be reimbursed the cost of their services," said Silverman, a retired judge who is not involved in the case.

If Cruz can access the money, the judge may compel him to get his own attorney instead of using the public defender. Victims' attorneys are also hoping to go after any assets available to him.

Accused Parkland shooter wants to donate six-figure inheritance to victims' families

  Accused Parkland shooter wants to donate six-figure inheritance to victims' families The 19-year-old accused of killing 17 people at his former high school in February wants to donate his six-figure inheritance to the families of the victims, an attorney for Nikolas Cruz told a judge on Wednesday.The Florida Sun-Sentinel re ports that defense attorney Melisa McNeill told a judge that Cruz wishes to donate his $800,000 inheritance to an organization of the families' choice."He would like that money donated to an organization that the victims' families believe could facilitate healing in our community," McNeill said. Cruz attended the Wednesday hearing but did not speak, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his public defender.

A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz can afford to hire his own attorneys so taxpayers can stop paying for his defense.

Prosecutors to seek death penalty

Last month, a grand jury indictedCruz on 17 counts of premeditated murder in the first degree and 17 counts of attempted murder in the first degree.

He's been held without bail in a Broward County jail, and appeared by video during his initial court appearance. The indigence hearing to decide whether taxpayers should stop paying for his defense team will be held in the county.

Prosecutors have said they will seek the death penalty. They listed several factors, including that Cruz knowingly created a risk of death for many people and the shooting was "especially heinous, atrocious or cruel."

Cruz's defense team has said there is no question he did it, and he's willing to plead guilty to avoid the death penalty.

Last month, his defense attorney told the judge that the teen was standing mute to the charges -- meaning he was declining to enter a plea. As a result, a judge entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf.

The 19-year-old confessed to being the gunman, court documents show. Police arrested him shortly after the massacre.

CNN's Jason Hanna contributed to this report.

Parkland school shooter started throwing up, hyperventilating after his arrest .
MIAMI - Minutes after being arrested for a gruesome killing spree, the Parkland school shooter had trouble standing up, began to heave and "vomited clear fluid" as a witness prepared to identify him, according to a police report written by the officer who detained him. When pinpointed as the man who attacked Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland with a semiautomatic rifle earlier that day, Nikolas Cruz then "began to hyperventilate," the incident report states. Paramedics were called as a precaution, according to the report, which was released Thursday by Coconut Creek police.

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