parkland school shooting

Potential Parkland Juror Sparks Death Penalty Discussion

NBC 6

It wasn't supposed to get this far this soon, but the death penalty arose as an issue Tuesday during the early stages of jury selection in the Parkland school shooting case.

The discussion arose when a potential juror mentioned she had a moral issue with serving on the jury that will decide the fate of Nikolas Cruz, who faces either the death penalty or life in prison in the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

"I don’t support the death penalty," the woman said during day two of jury selection. "From a religious standpoint I do not feel that it is my right to be able to say you deserve to be put to death."

The woman's comments led to the first time a defense death penalty specialist spoke in court.

South Carolina death penalty specialist Casey Secor tried to keep the woman as a viable juror.

"There’s nothing wrong with that as long as you can give equal consideration to both possible sentences," Secor told the woman.

But after prosecutor Michael Satz questioned the woman and she continued to say she couldn't impose the death penalty, it was enough to convince Judge Elizabeth Scherer that the woman shouldn't be on the jury.

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

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