New images from security cameras at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, have been released. The footage shows shooter Nikolas Cruz carrying an AR-15 as he walked around the school halls.
The footage was published on Friday by the Sun-Sentinel, as part of an investigation into the February 14 massacre which saw 17 people dead. The detailed report regards the alleged incompetence on the part of the Broward County Sheriff’s office and school district that resulted in a delayed response to the shooting.
Pictures of the terrified students gathering as they responded to the fire alarm were also released, as well as photos of the destruction done to the hurricane windows which ended up preventing Cruz from aiming deadly shots at first respondents on the scene.
The investigation detailed the nearly 60-minute chaos that was “marked by no one taking charge, deputies dawdling, false information spreading, communications paralyzed and children stranded with nowhere to hide.” School workers reportedly failed to call in a Code Red that would prompt a lock-down upon learning that there was an active shooter on campus.
According to previous media reports, school resource officer Scot Peterson, who was armed, didn’t take to the building where the shooting happened, and instead took cover. In the meantime, unarmed athletic director Chris Hixon headed to the premises as he heard the gunshots — and ended up becoming one of the victims of the massacre.
"There are ways we can prevent further violence in our classrooms. But by arming teachers, everyone engaged in the school safety debate loses." | By Cameron Kasky, former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, via @CNNOpinion https://t.co/noTopwMkSf— CNN (@CNN) December 28, 2018
The situation was worsened by the fact that the surveillance camera footage was delayed, leading police officers at the scene to believe Cruz was still in the building when he had already fled the school grounds. Previously-released images showed Cruz arriving on campus and entering building 12 before removing a rifle from a bag that he carried. The chilling footage also shows him coming face to face with student Chris McKenna as he gears up for the attack.
“You’d better get out of here. Things are gonna start getting messy,” Cruz told McKenna.
The massacre that took the lives of 17 people — and injured 17 more — resulted in the March For Our Lives movement. The political movement was started by some of the survivors, those advocating for stricter gun laws. The event not only changed how gun control reform is discussed in the U.S., but directly affected the daily lives of hundreds of teens who survived the shooting.
“This is my senior year of high school and I absolutely hate it. It’s the worst year of my life and I cannot wait until I finally graduate and move out of this area,” student Morgan Williams said.
“It’s impossible trying to heal and move forward with my life when I have to see the building everyday.”