After the heartbreaking tragedy that occurred at a Florida high school on Wednesday, we now know about the potential warning signs that were available, and in some cases brought to the attention of authorities, on Nikolas Cruz’s social media accounts.
I know that I will certainly be talking to my kids about not being afraid to speak up if they see posts like this. Not just if it is a stranger, but even if it is a good friend, kids and parents need to notify authorities when these signs are present. Taking a look at this kid’s online presence, there certainly was enough for these posts to be taken seriously.
Talk to your kids today and let us know what you find out. We want to help protect children against any danger we can so if you have something to share on our site, or with us directly (if you prefer to remain anonymous), please do so.
Originally posted on CNN’s site
Cruz’s digital footprint
Cruz’s social media posts paint what Israel called a “very, very disturbing” picture.
Israel said Cruz’s digital profile contains troubling content that included a variety of gun- and violence-related posts on social media.
A user going by the name of Nikolas Cruz also included slurs against blacks and Muslims in his posts.
A law enforcement source said authorities are aware of Cruz’s extremist views on social media. The investigation is in early stages and so they are gathering information. One question for investigators is whether Cruz simply espoused extremist views and used related language or was in fact tied to any groups.
Cruz’s disturbing behavior also included several threatening comments under videos on YouTube and other sites. They include:
- “I whana shoot people with my AR-15”
- “I wanna die Fighting killing s**t ton of people”
- “I am going to kill law enforcement one day they go after the good people.”
In September, a YouTube user going by Nikolas Cruz posted a comment to a vlogger’s YouTube page, saying, “Im going to be a professional school shooter.” A law enforcement official confirms the FBI received a report about the post
A law enforcement official told CNN earlier Thursday the FBI had received two reports regarding potential threats from the shooter.
But later Thursday, a separate law enforcement official said authorities believe they only received one report, regarding the comment on YouTube. The investigation is in its early stages, the source said, and information could change as leads are investigated.
On his Instagram page, Cruz posted a photo of a shotgun. In another photo he brandishes what appears to be a BB gun. In other pictures, he is covering his face with a kerchief and brandishing long knives.
Police say Cruz was armed with multiple magazines and at least one AR-15 style rifle. The suspected shooter bought the firearm in the past year and had passed the background check to make the purchase, according to a US official briefed on the investigation.
His host family knew nothing of his social media activity, Lewis said.
“They’re not social media people. They’re parents. They’re just not that kind of folks. And he’s an adult, and they tried to help him. But did they check up on him and follow him every minute of every day? They didn’t, because they didn’t see any of the signs that would indicate that there was anything really amiss, that he was capable of something violent,” he said.
Read more on this story below: