Minutes Before Shooting, Suspect Texted a Friend

Nikolas Cruz said he was going to the movies
By Josh Gardner,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 19, 2018 6:44 PM CST
Nikolas Cruz appears in court for a status hearing before Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Monday, Feb. 19, 2018   (Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP, Pool)

(Newser) – The Florida couple allowing Nikolas Cruz to live with them has revealed a chilling text he sent to their son just a few minutes before the shooting rampage at a Florida high school last week. "He told my son he's going to the movies," James Snead tells ABC's Good Morning America. Cruz reportedly also suggested in the text messages that he had a secret to tell, but he declined to share it. Minutes later, police say Cruz opened fire, killing 14 students and three members of school staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. James and Kimberley Snead said they allowed the "polite" Cruz, 19, to move in around Thanksgiving after his adoptive mother died from pneumonia. (They now say they feel like they had a "monster" under their roof.)

Also Monday, CNN reports that Cruz once again made an appearance, albeit a brief one, in a Florida courtroom. Wearing a red prison jumpsuit, Cruz attended a procedural hearing in silence and did not look at cameras as he was led in and out of the courtroom in shackles. The teenager obtained 10 rifles over the last year, per CNN. Cruz stands charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder. His state-appointed attorney has said the teen will likely enter a guilty plea if the death penalty is taken off the table. (Read more Nikolas Cruz stories.)

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