A deadly shooting at a South Florida high school left 17 people dead, and questions as to how the shooting even occurred.
Former student and suspect shooter Nikolas Cruz was booked into Broward County Jail early Thursday morning, and has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.
The first victim has been identified as Aaron Feis, an assistant football coach at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
The school’s football team tweeted, “He selflessly shielded students from the shooter when he was shot. He died a hero and he will forever be in our hearts and memories.”
Superintendent Robert Runcie told FOX 13 Cruz was dropped off by an Uber driver around dismissal time Wednesday afternoon. He entered through what the school calls the “1200 building” which has freshmen students, and opened fire.
The gunshots and smoke set off the fire alarm, and Cruz proceeded to enter through the other two floors of the building, Runcie explained. At some point, he discarded his weapon, and masked himself among students to escape the campus.
Two JROTC students, Zackary Walls and Colton Haab, tell FOX 13 News they were doing formations until 2:20 p.m. and decided, with 20 minutes left in the school day, to end practice.
“I am so happy I made that decision because where we do formation is 40 feet from where the shooter was,” Zachary explained.
After hearing the fire alarm, he said he began leading students to the fire drill area, which was where the shooter was, but before they reached, he heard gunshots.
“I just put two and two together: fire drill and gunshots. And I was like, active shooter,” Zachary said, who attended active shooter training with a local police department, and told the students to run back to the classroom.
Colton and Zachary began grabbing Kevlar mats to create a barrier around the students. The students in the classroom survived.
Zachary said Cruz was in the JROTC program during his freshman year, but believe he wore a polo shirt from the program to blend in with students.
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