A senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School claimed that she saw and spoke with alleged shooter Nikolas Cruz at the scene of the crime while her school was being evacuated.
Alexa Miednik spoke with Cruz but “did not see a gun,” according to one local reporter. During her conversation with Cruz, shots were still ringing out, but they were coming from a different part of the school.
“No, definitely not…Because when shots were fired, I saw him after the fact. And the shots were coming from the other part of the building. So there definitely had to be two shooters involved, I believe,” Miednik said.
“As we were walking, the whole class together, I actually was speaking to the suspect, Nikolas Cruz. And as I was speaking to him, he seemed very…he was troubled in middle school, so I kind of joked to him and said ‘I’m surprised you weren’t the one who did it,’ and he just gave me a ‘Huh?’,” Miednik said.
— Matt Musil (@KHOUSportsMatt) February 15, 2018
Nikolas Cruz was arrested and stands accused of killing at least 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where he used to be a student.
Cruz was expelled from the school. Law enforcement reportedly arrested him right outside a house near the high school campus, and sources say Cruz might have escaped the school after the shooting by blending in with fellow students.
Cruz’s mother is reportedly dead and he was living with a friend’s family.
The media has largely relied on three unnamed former schoolmates of Cruz, who have detailed in mainstream news articles his alleged fondness for guns and past disciplinary issues, which involve kicking a window in middle school.
Three unnamed former schoolmates also told ABC News that Cruz was part of a white supremacist group called Republic of Florida, which the group’s purported leader also claimed, according to the Anti-Defamation League. But a mainstream Forbes reporter and others have cast doubt on that claim.
The first unnamed former classmate of Cruz to speak to the media — who said that he went to alternative school with Cruz after Cruz was kicked out of high school — claimed that Cruz was fond of guns and that he knew the layout of the high school and what to do in a “fire drill” situation. A fire drill occurred at the school earlier in the day, and students and parents also said that they expected another drill — possibly an active shooter drill — at the school that same day. CBS 4 in Miami, which broadcast the former classmate’s claims, did not provide the former classmate’s name.
— Rob Dew (@DewsNewz) February 14, 2018
NEW: "We thought it was a drill," student evacuated from Parkland, Florida, high school tells CBS News. "We already had one earlier this morning…and then we heard gunshots; some students thought it was not that serious." https://t.co/1Y5NBGZMdE pic.twitter.com/FWVnssTSxK
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 14, 2018
The Broward County Sherriff’s Office stated that it cannot confirm a second shooter “at this time,” and has been mum regarding online speculation on the case.
Mom Drowns Her Five Kids in India’s Ganga River After Altercation with Husband
A mother of five reportedly threw her children into the Ganga river in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh’s Bhadohi district early Sunday morning after an alleged altercation with her husband. The youngest child was a three-year-old boy.
The Ganga river is deep. The woman has been identified as Manju. Her children are aged 12, 10, 8, 6 and 3.
The media initially speculated that food scarcity in the subcontinent due to the coronavirus lockdown had been the driving force behind her extreme behavior. However, in a video interview with police, it was later clarified that the COVID-19 lockdown was not the cause of the drownings.
India’s NDTV reported that a police officer said: “a search for the children is on.” The officer added, “Our priority is to rescue the children as soon as possible, We will carry out other investigations later.” However, according to a local publication, the Hindustan Times, the children are believed to be dead.
According to Asian News International (ANI), the woman confessed to committing the crime and told police, “I pushed my 5 children into the Ganga river after a fight with my husband. He always beats me.”
Here is a transcript from a video posted to Twitter by the Bhadohi Police in which an officer is questioning Manju, who appears to be startled (video has been translated from Hindi to English):
Officer: Speak loudly.
Manju: I put them in the water.
Officer: Why did you do this?
Manju: Tension in my mind.
Officer: What kind of stress? Family, food, etc.?
Manju: I had some arguments and fights that caused stress.
Officer: With whom did you fight?
Manju: With my husband.
Officer: What was the issue?
Manju: He used to fight with and beat me.
Officer: How many kids do you have?
Manju: Two boys and three girls.
Officer: What time did you bring the kids to the River Ganga?
Manju: I did not see the time.
According to the Superintendent of Bhadohi Police Ram Badan Singh, reports that Manju had jumped into the water after her she threw her kids in were false. Locals who were working in fields nearby who saw the incident and heard the children’s cries reportedly rushed to try and rescue the youth, but did not succeed.
Manju is reportedly a daily wage earner and while she cited a domestic incident as triggering her behavior, countless other daily wage and migrant workers in India have been placed under tremendous financial and emotional strain over the global COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown.
On April 15, India’s government imposed a mandatory 21-day national lockdown. Based on the World Bank’s poverty line of $3.2 per day income for a country like India, it is likely that the bottom 50 percentile of the subcontinent’s population will run out of cash.
According to a survey by a Jan Sahas, a civil society-focused nonprofit in India, at least 93% of day laborers have so far lost their one to three weeks of livelihood amid the lockdown, with over 80% of the country’s migrant and daily-wage population facing the prospect of starvation before the lockdown comes to an end.
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