What to Know
- Nikolas Cruz has three encounters with police in just over three weeks when he briefly lived in Palm Beach County in November 2017.
- The woman taking care of Cruz said he only cared about his gun and bought "tons of bullets." She said she took them away from him.
- Deschamps has filed to be the administrator for the estate of Lynda Cruz, the boy's adoptive mother.
Nikolas Cruz had three encounters with police in just over three weeks when he briefly lived in Palm Beach County in November 2017 following the death of his mother, according to the 911 calls released Thursday.
In one call, Cruz can be heard telling a dispatcher about his mother’s death. "I lost my mother a couple days ago and I’m dealing with some things right now," Cruz said.
Cruz had called 911 to tell his version of a fight he’d been in with the son of a woman who had taken him in since his mother Lynda Cruz’s Nov. 1 death.
“I kind of got mad and started punching walls,” Cruz told the dispatcher.
But Palm Beach County Sheriff’s dispatchers had already heard about what happened inside a trailer in the 6400 block of Easter Cay Way in Lantana.
The home’s owner, Rocxanne Deschamps, had called to report what had happened.
She explained that her son stepped in to try to stop Cruz from damaging the home when punches were thrown.
The police report of the incident in the afternoon on Nov. 29 says Cruz punched Deschamps and got punched back before he was told to leave the home to calm down.
In the 911 call, Deschamps describes her fear that Cruz would return with a gun. She said he had just recently purchased one from a nearby sporting goods store and that it was ready to be picked up.
"That's all he wants is his gun and that's all he cares about is his gun. He bought tons of bullets and I took them away from him," Deschamps explained.
The police report says Deschamps didn’t want Cruz arrested and that the two hugged to "reconcile their differences."
But it wasn’t the first time police were called to the home concerning Cruz. Deschamps had called police a few days earlier to alert them that he was afraid Cruz had buried a gun in the backyard.
“I told him the rules are there are no weapons on my property, no guns, I don’t want any of that,” Deschamps told police. “I’m positive that he hid a 9mm carbine in the back.”
Deschamps told police Cruz was working at the time and that he wanted them to find the gun before Cruz returned from work.
“I’m honestly afraid for my mother, my little brother,” she said.
The records provided by police don’t indicate if a gun was recovered.
A third call to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office in November 2017 came from a Douglas High School social worker.
She told the dispatcher she wanted someone to check on the boys because their mother had just died.
The social worker explained Cruz’s younger brother, Zachary, had been going to Douglas High but quit going when his mother died.
She wanted to make sure that he was checked on to make sure he was okay and going to school.
Zachary, now 18, continued to stay with Deschamps even when Nikolas left to stay with a school friend in Broward County.
Cruz was staying at the Pompano Beach home with the Snead family and there are no reports of calls to police during his time there.
On Feb. 14, Cruz is accused of using an AR-15 to open fire inside Douglas High School and killing 17 people.
Deschamps has filed to be the administrator for the estate of Lynda Cruz, the boy’s adoptive mother. She asked a court to appoint her to the role since she is caring for Zachary.
NBC 6 has found no record of an official guardianship filed over who should care for the boys.
But we have learned that Lynda Cruz did not have a will when she died.
When the boy’s adoptive father Roger Cruz died, court records show he left a trust for the family. But how much money exists is unknown.
Deschamps, as well as the Broward County Public Defender’s Office, want to find out what inheritance is awaiting the two teens.
Cruz reportedly told the Snead family that he was expecting to inherit hundreds of thousands of dollars when he turned 22.
If Nikolas Cruz has money that could be available to him, he may not be able to use the taxpayer-funded services of the public defender’s office or he may need to reimburse any money spent in his defense.