The sentencing trial for the Parkland school shooter begins Monday: What to know

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Nikolas Cruz sentencing trial begins in Parkland school shooting

  • The jury must unanimously recommend the death sentence or Nikolas Cruz will be sentenced to life in prison.
  • The trial, which has been delayed for months, is expected to last until late October.
  • More than 1,000 potential witnesses, including survivors and family members of the 17 people killed, could take the stand.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fl. — Opening statements begin Monday in the trial of Nikolas Cruz for the murder of 17 people inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the deadliest U.S. mass shooting case to reach a jury.

Beginning this week, a 12-person jury and a Broward County judge will set out to decide the fate of the 23-year-old gunman, who pleaded guilty in October to 17 counts of premeditated first-degree murder and 17 counts of attempted murder. Cruz’s mental health likely will be at the center of the trial.

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