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Parkland shooter pleads guilty to 17 counts of murder

Randy Mancini 12 October 20, 2021
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz is shown seated at the defense table as he is in court to plead guilty to all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in the 2018 shootings, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. (Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP, Pool)

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz is shown seated at the defense table as he is in court to plead guilty to all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in the 2018 shootings, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. (Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP, Pool)

The self-confessed Parkland high school shooter, Nikolas Cruz, pleaded guilty to jail battery, in addition to several murder and attempted murder charges.

The former student pleaded guilty to four felony charges of assault and battery on a law enforcement officer on Friday after he allegedly attacked a deputy in 2018. According to video and eyewitness accounts, the suspect rushed, tackled and punched an officer in a jail common area before being restrained.

In a Florida courtroom on Wednesday, 23-year-old Cruz pleaded guilty to 17 counts of murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in relation to the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Cruz attempted to apologize to the victims families in court, saying it should be their decision on whether he faces the death penalty or not.

WATCH: Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz pleads guilty to all charges for the attack that killed 17 people and injured 17 others https://t.co/3JfAQzUmCm pic.twitter.com/WJBX223Kei

— CBS News (@CBSNews) October 20, 2021

However, authorities believe Cruz’s defense team is seeking to avoid the death penalty.

In the meantime, jury selection for the sentencing phase of Cruz’s trial is set to begin in January.

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