In a bizarre new twist to the story of Parkland, Florida school shooter, Nikolas Cruz, it appears he may lose his court-appointed attorney.
The day after he was arrested, Cruz filled out the paperwork required to apply for “criminal indigent” status. He was appointed a lawyer, but now, new revelations of a possible inheritance may mean that status no longer applies to him.
Howard Finkelstein, the public defender of Broward County, Florida, filed a motion on Tuesday asking a judge to conduct an “indigency determination” on the 19-year-old suspect after reports surfaced that he could stand to inherit $800,000 from his parents.
“It could result in us being removed from the case,” Finkelstein told ABC News in a telephone interview this morning. “The question here is, are there enough resources to pay for a lawyer?”
Well, if he’s got $800,000 he may be able to pay for his own defense, sure.
Cruz’s adoptive father, Robert Cruz died in the Fall of 2004. His mother, Lynda Cruz, was 68 years old and died of pneumonia in November of 2017.
There was no will, but if those funds are there, most likely, they will go to him.
Some have reported that Cruz was dealing with depression at the time of the attack on Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. He killed 17 people on February 14, and injured many more.
He may have been depressed, but his problems and reports of disruptive or threatening behavior began long before.