FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Police officers arrested Nikolas Cruz around 3:40 p.m. on February 14.
This was about 80 minutes after Cruz is suspected of carrying out a deadly school shooting on the campus of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
By about 6:15 that day Cruz sat in front of a seasoned BSO detective to answer questions about one of the deadliest school shootings in American history.
But it was comments that Cruz made while alone in the room that reveal much about his thinking.
At one point, when Detective John Curcio briefly left the room, Cruz said “Kill me. Just (expletive) kill me. (Expletive).”
Later, while alone, Cruz said “I want to die. At the end you’re nothing but worthless (expletive), dude. You deserve to die because you’re (expletive) worthless…”
The information is contained in a 217 page statement that the Broward State Attorney’s Office released Monday. We know from the arrest report in the case that Cruz confessed to the school shooting.
Those specific details are blacked out in the statement released Monday because they are evidence of a possible confession. There are pages and pages redacted from the document.
During the interview with BSO detective John Curcio, Cruz said he twice tried to kill himself and felt lonely and depressed for years, especially after his mother Lynda died last November. He also said that he hears a voice or a demon in his head.
Det. Curcio: “What does the voice say to you? What does it tell you to do?”
Cruz: “Burn. Kill. Destory.”
Curcio: “Ok. Burn, kill, destroy what?”
But the detective wasn’t buying it, repeatedly poking holes in Cruz’s stories. At one point, Curcio said “…I think you’re using the demon as an excuse.”
Cruz also said that he cuts himself. “Cut myself to the point where (blood) just starts pouring.” He said.
Cruz said he cut himself on the morning of the shooting, while he was out fishing.
The topic of guns came up. Cruz said he owned several and bought them legally, many with his mother in tow, although Cruz said she never went into the gun stores with him. Cruz told the detective that he told his mother he bought the guns because they were cool and to protect himself from the voice in his head. The detective asked him about his AR-15.
Det. Curcio: “What made you choose out of all the guns to want to buy an AR-15?”
Cruz: “Cool looking.” Cruz said.
We also learn Cruz had other violent plans, including an idea a week before the shooting at Stoneman Douglas to shoot up a park.
Curcio asked him, “…you were going to start shooting people at the park?” Cruz said, “Yeah,” before admitting that he didn’t have a specific park picked out. As to why he didn’t carry out an attack, Cruz said, “I didn’t want to do it.”
At the end of his interrogation at BSO, investigators let Zachary Cruz, Nikolas’s brother, meet with him.
They talked about their late mother.
Zachary Cruz said, “What do you think mom think right now if she was…” Nikolas Cruz replied: “She would cry.” Zachary agreed with him.
Zachary apologized to his brother for making it seem that he hated him as they grew up.
“Now I’m sorry that I’ve I grew up being a dumb jerk to you and made fun of you and didn’t want you to hang out with my friends,” Zachary said.
Nikolas apologized to his brother and the pair hugged.
Zachary repeatedly tried to tell his brother that he had value and was loved.
“I know what you did today,” Zachary told him. “Other people look at me like I’m crazy for even — and I don’t — I don’t care what other people think. Like you’re my brother. I love you.”
A short time later, deputies handcuffed Nikolas Cruz and took him to jail where he would be booked on 17 counts of murder and 17 counts of attempted murder. The Broward State Attorney’s Office says they plan to release on Tuesday the video of Cruz’s statement to BSO. If convicted, Cruz could face the death penalty.
Cruz’s attorneys have said they will have him plead guilty to the murders if prosecutors would agree not to seek death in this case.