NewsParkland Shooting

Actions

Jury selection in Parkland school shooter's trial upended by T-shirt

Woman wears burgundy, silver shirt saying 'Teachers Strong'
Nikolas Cruz, May 23, 2022
Posted at 2:12 PM, May 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-23 18:21:24-04

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Jury selection in the penalty trial of the Parkland school shooter hit a new stumbling block when a potential juror wore a T-shirt potentially prejudicial to his case.

The woman wore a burgundy and silver T-shirt on Monday saying "Teachers Strong" and two hashtags — #neveragain and #msdstrong” — referring to Cruz's 2018 murder of 17 people at Parkland's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High.

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Parkland school shooting

Those are the school's colors and such T-shirts were ubiquitous in South Florida long after the shooting.

Judge Elizabeth Scherer, May 23, 2022
Judge Elizabeth Scherer speaks during jury selection in the penalty phase of the trial of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale on Monday, May 23, 2022. Cruz previously plead guilty to all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in the 2018 shootings.

Judge Elizabeth Scherer dismissed not only the woman, but nine other potential jurors who were in her group.

The public also learned Monday that a member of the defense team has also become ill unexpectedly. There's no official word on whether that will delay the case.

Cruz pleaded guilty to the murders last year.

The jury will decide whether he gets a sentence of death or life in prison.

Testimony is scheduled to start June 27 and possibly last through the end of October.