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Cruz Family Service Calls Numbered 45, Nearly Double What Sheriff Says

Image: Cruz Family Service Calls Numbered 45, Nearly Double What Sheriff Says

Broward County Sheriff, Scott Israel (L) and Florida Governor Rick Scott (R) speak to the media about the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where 17 people were killed yesterday, on February 15, 2018 in Parkland, Florida. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 27 February 2018 08:59 AM

Cruz family service calls regarding the Florida school shooter or his brother numbered at least 45, according to sheriff's office records obtained by CNN. That's nearly double the number of calls Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel has publicly acknowledged.

The discrepancy is part of a wider narrative regarding law enforcement's response surrounding the deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where former student Nikolas Cruz killed 17 people on Feb. 14.

Cruz's run-ins with police prior to the shooting have been a sticking point in the gun control debate. Israel and the sheriff's office claim they received no more than 23 family service calls regarding Cruz or his brother, CNN reported.

The office even released a list showing the 23 calls for service at the Cruz home.

Of those calls, 18 involved Cruz, but the sheriff’s office stated that none of these “appeared arrestable under Florida law.”

However, sheriff's office records obtained by CNN show that the office received 45 calls regarding the Cruz home between 2008 and 2017.

The sheriff’s office maintains that the figure — and the widely reported one of 39 — is inaccurate.

“Since 2008, BSO responded to 23 incidents where previous contact was made with the killer or his family,” a statement released on Saturday read.

“STOP REPORTING 39; IT'S SIMPLY NOT TRUE.”

According to CNN’s review of the records, there were at least 19 calls relating to Cruz and an additional 25 regarding his younger brother. The calls report escalating behavior from the brothers, ranging from fighting, running away, hitting their mother, and an accusation against Cruz for shooting a chicken with a BB gun.

The records include a disturbing revelation: In 2016, a neighbor warned the sheriff's office that Cruz posted on Instagram about "planning to shoot up the school." The neighbor spoke to CNN this week and said she was told at the time that authorities could do nothing about the threat until Cruz actually did something.

The Parkland gunman was also a cause for concern among officials at his former school, with disciplinary records obtained by The New York Times showing that he had a violent history of fighting.

The day that Cruz’s mother died, on Nov. 1, a family member contacted the Broward Sheriff's Office and voiced concerns that Cruz was collecting rifles. On Nov. 30, a Massachusetts tipster cautioned that Cruz was “collecting guns and knives” and “could be a school shooter in the making,” according to CNN.

The FBI has also admitted that it failed to follow up or investigate tips on Cruz.

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Cruz family service calls regarding the Florida school shooter or his brother numbered at least 45, according to sheriff's office records obtained by CNN. That's nearly double the number of calls Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel has publicly acknowledged.
cruz, family service, calls, shooting
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2018-59-27
Tuesday, 27 February 2018 08:59 AM
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