Zachary Cruz is the biological brother of Florida School shooter, Nikolas Cruz –who is accused of killing at least 17 students and injuring many more, in the deadliest shooting since 2012.
Zachary’s brother deliberately set off a fire alarm at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida at 14:30 local time (19:30 GMT) on February 14. The alarm caused some students and staff to leave their classrooms. Witnesses said that the gunman was deploying smoke grenades and wearing a gas mask.
19-year-old Cruz then managed to escape the scene by blending in with fleeing students, but was arrested several miles away and is now in police custody. Nikolas Cruz was detained in the nearby town of Coral Springs. He was then treated in hospital and taken into police custody.
Zachary’s brother happens to be a former student who was expelled from the school for disciplinary reasons. Teachers, as well as students, have said Cruz had behavioral issues, more specifically he allegedly made threats to other students. A student told the Associated Press Nikolas Cruz was kicked out because of a fight with his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend.
Other students have said Cruz not only was obsessed with guns but also talked about guns and even posted to social media about guns. Two Instagram accounts depict Cruz holding guns and knives.
Nikolas Cruz parents are both death and reports say he had been living with a friend’s family who lives in Broward, for about three months. They say Nikolas had been working at a dollar store and had been attending an adult education center, adding he did not warn anybody about his intentions to shoot his former school. Cruz also attended a mental health clinic for a while and was depressed following the death of his mother.
He and his younger brother Zachary Cruz, were both adopted as infants by Lynda and her husband, Roger. Their mother Lynda passed away last November while Roger Cruz died years ago. Following Lynda’s death of pneumonia last year, Cruz and his brother were left in the care of a family friend, Rocxanne Deschamps
According to the New York Times, Zachary Cruz also presented regular behavioral problems. On March 20, 2018, it was revealed Zachary had been arrested for trespassing at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School; he said he did it because he wanted to “reflect on the school shooting and soak it in.