Nicholas Cruzthe man was found guilty of shooting 17 people and wounding 17 others Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Art Park zone, FloridaFebruary 14, 2018, now awaiting trial for his crimes.

Cruz — a former student at the facility who was a member of the air rifle team and had a lengthy disciplinary record — was just 19 years old when he arrived in Uber that day with a legally purchased AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and was shot. 14 students and three staff members in what turned out to be one of the deadliest school massacres in American history.

He was arrested by police later that day and pleaded guilty to 17 counts of first-degree murder and 17 counts of attempted murder. His actions sparked a nationwide protest movement demanding stricter gun control measures and a nasty political debate involving survivors of the attack. David Hogg and Emma Gonzalez were accused of right-wing commenters being paid by “crisis actors”.

Cruz arrived on campus the day of the attack at approximately 2:19 p.m., wearing a burgundy shirt with the school’s crest on it and carrying a black duffel bag containing his weapon and several magazines of ammunition, some of which reportedly had swastikas painted on them, consistent with racist their owner’s online persona.

He was recognized by a school security guard walking “purposefully” to building 12, which had 30 classrooms, but they failed to call a “Code Red”, later citing the technicalities of teaching as an excuse for hesitation.

Cruz duly entered the unit two minutes later and stopped on the landing to unpack his rifle.

“You better get out of here,” he warned 15-year-old student Chris McKenna as he walked by.

“It’s going to start with a mess.”

As Mr. McKenna ran for help, Cruz emerged from the first-floor staircase and began firing indiscriminately down the hallway, tearing down doors, killing 11 people and injuring 13 in less than two minutes.

At 2:22 p.m., the school’s fire alarm went off to force students to evacuate as the police were called.

A minute later, the school’s resource officer, Deputy Scott Peterson, issued a radio alert warning that shots had been fired, suggesting that what he thought were bullets might be firecrackers.

Afterward, he was seen on CCTV in the southeast corner of Building 12, where he remained throughout the attack, a decision that led to the then US president harshly criticizing him as a “coward”. Donald Trumphowever, Mr. Peterson insisted that he was unable to determine where the shots were coming from.

Meanwhile, Cruz returned to the stairs, opened fire again on the second floor, this time hitting no one, before repeating the tactic on the third, killing the last six victims and injuring four more.

(South Florida Sun Sentinel/AP)

As terrified students huddled in classrooms, some reporting what was happening on social media, Cruz set up a bipod in the staff room with a gun mounted on it, intending to shoot across campus like a sniper.

However, he was unable to break the windows because they were made of hurricane-resistant glass.

At 2:28 p.m., he dropped his weapon and fled through another stairwell, managing to flee the scene by heading toward the school’s tennis courts and blending in with students to disguise himself, his shooting spree in less than five minutes.

At 2:32 p.m., four Coral Springs police officers and two Broward County sheriff’s deputies entered the building for the first time and were confronted with the gruesome aftermath of Cruz’s actions.

After leaving the Stoneman Douglas area, the killer entered a Coral Springs Walmart at 2:50 p.m., stopped at a Subway restaurant for a soda, sat at a McDonald’s, and was spotted by Broward County police officer Michael Leonard, who arrested him in Windham. The surroundings of the Lakes at 3:41 p.m.

At a press conference at 6:27 p.m., Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel confirmed the death toll and identified Cruz as a suspect in custody.

Later that evening, a candlelight vigil for the victims was attended by thousands and chants of “More guns!” burst forth from the grief-stricken mourners.

Cruz appeared in court the next day and was described by his public defender as a “deeply troubled child who suffered a great deal of emotional trauma in a short period of time,” alluding to the death of his adoptive parents and a chaotic teenage years.

Days after the atrocity, some of the Parkland survivors banded together to form Never Again MSD, a protest group calling for an end to gun violence.

Parkland school shooting survivor and March for Our Lives co-founder David Hogg pauses during a speech during a rally outside the office of Republican Sen. Marco Rubio in Miami calling for gun reform on June 3, 2022.

(Wilfred Lee/AP)

On March 7, a grand jury indicted Cruz on 34 counts.

On March 9, Florida’s then-Gov Rick Scott signed a bill that introduced new restrictions on state gun laws and allowed teachers trained to use firearms to be armed.

Cruz was arraigned on March 13, and prosecutors announced their intention to seek the death penalty.

On March 14, a judge declared the accused “not guilty” after an offer by Cruz’s lawyers to plead guilty in exchange for the prosecution not to punish him was rejected.

March 24 March for our lives in Washington, DC, there was a demonstration organized by the Never Again MSD campaign demanding national action.

In the anniversary year of the attack, Valentine’s Day 2019, families of the victims, students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas reunited for an emotional memorial for the victims.

On October 20, 2021, Nikolas Cruz finally pleaded guilty to all charges and apologized for his actions.

His sentencing was postponed several times due to Corona virus infection covid-19 pandemic, but finally began on July 18.

On Aug. 4, the prosecution rested its case, ending nearly three weeks of vivid testimony, including details of the victims’ final moments.

Jurors were taken to the scene of the massacre and toured the school, seeing it as it was left after the deadly mass shooting.

On August 22, the defense opened its case, arguing that Cruz should be sentenced to life in prison rather than the death penalty.

The defense restated its case on Sept. 14, clearing the way for the state to begin its rebuttal on Sept. 27.