Photos inside MSD classrooms show pre-existing safety problems, commission says

By Terrell Forney - Reporter

SUNRISE, Fla. - The public safety commission formed in the wake of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre met again Wednesday as members prepare for the commission's final report.

Snapshots taken by investigators Feb. 14 inside of classrooms in the doomed Building 12 at Stoneman Douglas show pre-existing problems with safety and security.

"If you went into that classroom and you took a hard left into a hard corner, you were going to be safe. Where you were unsafe is if you were in that line of sight," Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said. "And, unfortunately, there were a lot of people in that line of sight, including people who couldn't get into the hard corners."

Furniture and desks were in those so-called safe areas as bullets fired by the Parkland shooter pierced the walls and windows, killing 17 students and teachers.

Only minutes before, an unarmed security monitor, Andrew Medina, saw Nikolas Cruz walk onto campus with a rifle bag. But for reasons still unclear, he did not call an emergency code red and only advised on his radio of suspicious noises coming from the freshman building. 

"The failure to call a code red immediately cost dozens of lives," said Ryan Petty, whose daughter Alaina, 14, was killed in the massacre.

Petty sits on the commission now tasked with figuring out what went wrong and coming up with preventive solutions.

On Wednesday, the panel learned about security training that staff at the school went through just a month before the mass shooting.

Many doors were locked on that fateful day, but there appeared to be confusion among faculty about how to use the color-coded emergency campus alert system. 

"There are administrators still at the school and on duty that failed the kids on Feb. 14 and I think there are students that are still at risk today should something like this happen again," Petty said. 

The commission also discussed photos of Cruz that showed him posing with rifles or showed him wearing military gear.

The photos made it was clear the Parkland school shooter had an obsession with firepower.

The pictures pulled from Cruz's phone also revealed dead animals, racially charged images and proof that he researched prior mass shootings before carrying out the MSD massacre. 

The MSD Public Safety Commission is reviewing evidence and hearing from witnesses this week before turning over its findings to the governor.
 

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