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Prosecutors seek death penalty for Nikolas Cruz

By Sommer Brokaw
Prosecutors seek death penalty for Nikolas Cruz
Gunman Nikolas Cruz will face a potential death sentence for the deaths of 17 people last month at a high school in Parkland, Fla., prosecutors announced Tuesday. Photo courtesy Broward County Sheriff/UPI | License Photo

March 13 (UPI) -- Florida prosecutors said Tuesday they will seek a death sentence against school shooter Nikolas Cruz for last month's shooting attack at a high school in Parkland.

Broward County prosecutors made the announcement Tuesday in a court filing.

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Cruz, 19, is accused of killing 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School with an AR-15 assault rifle on Feb. 14.

Defense attorney Howard Finkelstein has offered to have Cruz serve a sentence of life in exchange for guilty plea to 34 grand jury charges, which includes 17 counts of first-degree murder.

The offer was declined by prosecutors for several reasons -- among them, "heinous, atrocious and cruel" nature of the crimes and the "cold, calculated and premeditated way" it was handled, the Sun-Sentinel reported.

In court filings Tuesday, prosecutors also said Cruz put people at risk of death and hindered "any government function or enforcement of laws."

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