Live Updates: Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz to be sentenced to life in prison

The lengthy trial of Parkland massacre shooter Nikolas Cruz – jury selection began six months ago, in early April – has seen prosecutors and defense attorneys present evidence of aggravating factors and mitigating circumstances, the reasons why Cruz should or shouldn’t be put to death.

The state pointed to seven such aggravating factors — including that the murders were particularly heinous, atrocious or cruel, as well as cold, calculated and premeditated — lead prosecutor Michael Satz said at the trial. Other aggravating factors include that the defendant knowingly created a great risk of death for many people and that he disrupted a lawful government function – in this case, the operation of a school.

Together, these aggravating factors “outweigh any mitigation of anything relating to the defendant’s background or character,” Satz said.

Underlining their point, prosecutors presented evidence showing the shooter spent months researching information about the mass shootings online and left comments on social media sharing his express desire to “kill people”.

Some of his Google searches included broad, generic terms, like “murder” or “shooting people.” Others said he was looking for information on specific mass shootings and who carried them out. He also sought a map of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, from which he had been expelled, and information on “how long does it take for a cop to show up at a school shooting.” And on YouTube, Cruz left comments like “I’m gonna be a pro school shooter” and promised to “go wild.”

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