New video shows Parkland shooting suspect in fight at high school

Cruz has history of trouble with school officials, complaints from neighbors

PARKLAND, Fla. – Local 10 News has obtained a video showing Parkland shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz fighting with other students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Cruz is described as a disturbed young man who seemingly slipped through the cracks despite glaring red flags.

The fight was one of five times that officials at Marjory Stoneman Douglas disciplined Cruz while he was a student there. He was suspended for two days after the incident, which happened on Sept. 20, 2016. He was eventually transferred to another school in February of last year.

"Every day we're learning something more and more about the killer," Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said.

The Broward Sheriff's Office got more than 20 calls about Cruz over the last few years. There were so many calls that former neighbors remember the trouble. 

"The police were in the driveway a lot," one neighbor said.

Others were so concerned they contacted the authorities about Cruz, but their warnings were ignored.

"This kid, in his own way, was screaming out in every way the mind knows how to scream out. He did everything including saying, 'I want to go and shoot people in school.' I don't know what you can do more than that to get somebodies attention," Howard Finkelstein, Cruz's court-appointed lawyer, said.

Someone had called the FBI tip line to warn them about Cruz on Jan. 5. The caller gave details about Cruz's guns, his desire to kill people, erratic behavior and disturbing social media posts. 

The information provided by the caller should have been assessed as a potential threat to life and forwarded to the FBI's Miami field office, the bureau said in a statement. But that never happened.

"The potential of the FBI to miss something is always there. we do our best. (We're) looking where or how protocol broke down," Robert Lasky, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Miami field office, said.

About the Author:

Amy Viteri is an Emmy Award-winning journalist who joined Local 10 News in September 2015. She's currently an investigative reporter and enjoys uncovering issues facing South Florida communities. A native of the Washington, D.C., area, she's happy to be back in South Florida, where she earned a masters degree at the University of Miami.