Police reportedly failed to intervene in accused Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz’s life even though a neighbor said she gave police myriad examples of Cruz’s concerning behavior.
According to Joelle Guarino, law enforcement said that they could do nothing at the time because Cruz wasn’t an “immediate threat.”
What are the details?
Guarino, in an interview with CNN’s Rosa Flores, reported that Guarino called the cops after her son showed her Cruz’s Instagram posts which reportedly featured weapons and indicated that he had interest in carrying out a school shooting.
“I begged [the officer],” Guarino said. “And he basically told me that it was not an immediate threat so he couldn’t do anything.”
Guarino added that she recalled the officer leaving and said to herself, “My God, he’s going to kill something and I can do nothing about it.”
Guarino indicated that she wasn’t at all surprised when she heard about Cruz’s purported involvement in the deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which took the lives of 17 people and injured many more.
“I had no doubt he was going to do this,” she said. “My husband and I both knew that we would eventually see him one day on the news, wearing an orange jumpsuit, being charged with murder.”
According to CNN, Guarino “knew” it was Cruz who reportedly carried out the mass shooting when she’d heard the news.
Flores also said that during her interview with Guarino, the former neighbor said that she could sense Cruz’s “darker side,” and detailed an occasion where “Cruz was standing over her dog as the dog was foaming and convulsing and he had this wild, eerie look about him.”
Guarino also told Flores that Cruz exhibited concerning behavior from the time that he was a baby.
She described an occasion where Cruz, as a baby, continuously hit one of her own sons with a toy. According to Guarino, Cruz’s mother intervened, and began “hitting him and asking him not to hit others.”
Guarino detailed an occurrence a few years later when Cruz reportedly locked himself in one of the rooms in her house and destroyed property contained therein after other kids made fun of him for spilling a drink and joking that it looked like he’d wet himself.
She added that Cruz, at the age of 10, one time, threw a rock at her son, striking him in the face.
Guarino eventually ended up ending her friendship with Cruz’s mother, but detailed his mother’s own odd behaviors, including reportedly locking up the refrigerator and pantry. Guarino added that she’d feed Cruz at her own home when he was hungry.
Another neighbor, Paul Gold, corroborated Guarino’s story about the locked refrigerator and pantry, but said that it wasn’t done to punish Cruz, but rather was done because Cruz’s mother was working from a shoestring budget and would sometimes run out of food in the home.
Guarino reported that she’d also witnessed Cruz killing small animals, such as toads, and said he would later dissect them.
“His face was excited that it was happening — with this wild satisfaction look,” Guarino explained. “As soon as he saw me his demeanor changed.”