parkland school shooting

Jury Selection in Parkland School Shooting Sentencing Delayed Another Week

Nikolas Cruz's lead attorney is still out sick but is expected to return May 16, defense team says

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The next phase in the life-or-death sentencing of convicted mass killer Nikolas Cruz has been delayed until May 16.

Lead defense attorney Melisa McNeill is still out sick, but the rest of the defense team assured Broward Judge Elizabeth Scherer that McNeill should be back next Monday.

One final juror was brought into court Monday morning to determine whether or not he could serve on the jury.

He said he was a self-employed software engineer and would lose clients if he had to sit in court for what’s expected to be at least a four-month proceeding.

Nearly 400 jurors were chosen initially from among more than 1,600 since April 4. The process of paring down that group is already underway.

The judge said some jurors have indicated they have realized new hardships that would prevent them from serving.

She also asked the attorneys to check their lists of jurors to see if there are any they can eliminate in advance of the next phase of questioning. Those jurors have been divided up into groups A through G.

That next phase would ask prospective jurors more pointed questions such as whether publicity surrounding the deadly school shooting would influence their decision and how they feel about putting a 23-year-old to death.

Cruz pled guilty to 17 charges of murder and 17 charges of attempted murder following the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Feb. 14, 2018. He is facing life in prison or the death penalty.

Click here for complete coverage of the Parkland school shooting jury selection

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