Kimberly and James Snead
Kimberly and James Snead; the husband and wife who hosted Florida killer Nikolas Cruz after his mother Lynda Cruz passed away in November 2017 and before he killed 17 innocent children and teachers at Marjory Douglas Stone High School last week. His younger brother Zachary who is a week shy of his 18 birthday and has been involuntarily committed to a psychiatric facility lived family friend Rocxanne Deschamps at her mobile home in Lantana; who also told Nikolas while he and Zachary were welcomed at her home, his home weren’t.
“We had this monster living under our roof and we didn’t know. We didn’t see this side of him.”
“Everything everybody seems to know, we didn’t know,” James Snead said. “It’s as simple as that.”
Kimberly Snead said “They were going past us. And I basically, I went after him. I wanted to strangle him more than anything,”
“Really, Nik? Really?” Kimberly yelled at him.
“He said he was sorry. He apologized. He looked lost, absolutely lost,” said James. “And that was the last time we saw him.”
James Snead, 48, a construction consultant and former U.S. Army soldier, said he and his wife Kimberly agreed to take Nikolas Cruz a friend of their son because they saw him as a young distraught kid, sadden by his mother’s sudden death.
Over the time Cruz lived with the Snead, they saw progress in him, he was attending adult-education classes, took his bicycle to his job as a cashier and often would watch TV shows with the rest of the family; the only thing that bothered them was Nikolas’ gun collection but they felt relieved when they stored all of Cruz’ guns in a gun safe, although they have no idea, Nikolas kept a key to himself.
Mr. Snead said Cruz asked to get them only twice. Once, he said no. Another time, about four weeks ago, he allowed Cruz to clean one of the firearms for about 15 minutes.
“I thought I had the only key,” Snead said.
49-year-old Kimberly Snead a neonatal nurse, said Nikolas said he didn’t need a ride to school on Valentine’s day because he didn’t go to school on Valentine’s, that night she has a shift at the hospital and when she came home the following morning, he wasn’t there.
Kimberly went to sleep; her husband, on the other hand, received a call from his son, telling him there had been a shooting on campus, but that he was OK. James drove to a Walmart close to the school to pick his son up, when he received another phone call, this time it was from the SWAT team.
They called me about Cruz, whom they mistakenly believed was my son. I had no idea where Cruz was.
It was soon after that the dreadful realization dawned on me. Cruz was responsible. I immediately called the deputy back, asking that officers rush to the house because I thought he (Nikolas) might be home with my wife who was sleep after her night shift at the hospital.