'That creature has no redeemable value': Parkland victims' families lash out at Nikolas Cruz during sentencing
'May every second of your rotten existence be faced with the images of each person you’ve slaughtered along with each family member you’ve damaged?,' one of the victim's grandmom said
Warning: This content contains a recollection of crime and can be triggering to some, readers' discretion is advised.
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA: Families of Parkland victims unleash anger and grief against Parkland shooting killer Nikolas Cruz on Tuesday, November 1, after the court sentenced him to life after much deliberation and discussion. Cruz, who killed 14 students and three teachers at Douglas high school in February 2018, has been sentenced to life in prison without parole.
One of the victims, Alyssa Alhadeff's grandmother told Cruz, “I’m too old to see you live out your life sentence, but I hope your every-breathing moment here on earth is miserable and you repent for your sins Nikolas and burn in hell." She also said that she has an idea for how Nikolas might spend his life in prison, which could be by writing a book about how he and his defense counsel "beat the judicial system and got away with murder," reported USA Today. She further added, "The fact that you are breathing the same air as I am sends shivers down my spine,” she said, reported Sun-Sentinel. “May every second of your rotten existence be faced with the images of each person you’ve slaughtered along with each family member you’ve damaged.”
“It is my hope that you go somewhere to meet your maker. And Parkland murderer, I hope your maker sends you directly to hell to burn for the rest of your eternity," said David Robinovitz, Alyssa's grandfather. He also added, he hoped Cruz's ashes would be thrown into a landfill."You know why?" he asked. "Because garbage to garbage."
Meghan Petty, who lost her 14-year-old sibling, Alaina, during the rampage, said, “This ordeal has pushed me to my emotional, physical, and mental limits. It will continue to do so for the rest of my life. Even more so now that he has escaped being punished to the fullest extent of the law, as I believe he should have been, knowing that he gets to live out the rest of his natural life. Something Alaina doesn’t get to do," reported New York Post. “He chose to turn to violence,and is now being protected from the same punishment he needlessly inflicted on my sister because he’s too scared to receive what he exuberantly dished out," she continued.
Debra Hixon, the wife of the school's athletic director, Chris Hixon, said, "I wish nothing for you today. After today, I don't care what happens to you." Patricia Oliver, the mother of one of the victim's Joaquin Oliver, lashed out at the court asking, "If the worst mass shooter to go to trial doesn't deserve execution, who does?" She also claimed that the jurors showed more compassion to the gunman than he did her son. "Evil is in Cruz's system, it's in theirs now, too," she said. Oliver also claimed that she was beyond feeling anger and all she has now is emptiness and grief. Oliver pointed to Cruz and each of his attorneys and said, "I am broken."
Max Schachter, who lost his son, Alex during the attack claimed, "We were prohibited from talking about the murderer, the crime and the punishment that he deserves." Ilan Alhadeff, father of Alyssa said, “I’m disgusted with those jurors, I’m disgusted with the system, that you can allow 17 dead and 17 others shot and wounded, and not get the death penalty. What do we have the death penalty for?," reported CNN. “That creature has no redeemable value,” he said, adding that he suffers 'at least 17 times in over,' reported Sun-Sentinel.
Anthony Montalto, whose older sister, 14-year-old Gina died in the rampage said, “I will never be able to watch TV with her, talk about books with her. Every day I walk by her room and see that it’s empty. … Every day I wake up and I remember that she will not be there,” His father, Tony Montalto, added in court, “If the jury took in the evidence presented, there is only logical and fact-based outcome. Sadly, the jury ignored the facts and went with emotion. They worried how they’d feel ... [if Cruz] was put to death.”
Further, he added, “Did they consider what kind of message their verdict sent to our nation’s students and teachers?” he continued. “Did they consider how they would explain their verdict to the siblings of the victims, as my wife and I struggled to do?" "I don't believe the case was fair to the victims. The court allowed the defense to show every aspect." He also claimed, "The court did everything it could to dehumanize our beautiful Gina, her classmates and her teachers," he said. "My family and the others had to sit like church mice in the courtroom for fear of influencing the jury. This injustice must be fixed. The victims' rights must be recognized."
Samantha Mayor, one of the survivors, wrote in a statement, "when I was laying on the floor unable to move and terrified to speak. I remember accepting my death at that moment and reminding myself that my friends and family know that I love them." She also added, she said she’s “devastated” by the life sentence. “Now we all have to breathe the same air of someone who wanted us never to take another breath," she added.
"I did my job, and every member of this team did their jobs. We should not personally be attacked for that," said Cruz's lead defense attorney, Melisa McNeill. In the closing remarks, McNeill said “Sometimes, the people who deserve the least amount of compassion and grace and remorse are the ones who should get it.”