Families of Parkland School Shooting Victims File Lawsuits Charging Negligence

Mourners bring flowers on Feb. 25, 2018, as they pay tribute at a memorial for the victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla. (Photo: David Santiago, Miami Herald, via AP)
Mourners bring flowers on Feb. 25, 2018, as they pay tribute at a memorial for the victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla. (Photo: David Santiago, Miami Herald, via AP)

More than 20 lawsuits filed by the families of Parkland school shooting victims accuse the Broward County school board, sheriff’s office and others with negligence for failing to prevent the massacre that left 17 people dead and 17 injured.

Nikolas Cruz, a former student, has confessed to the killings on Feb. 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

Among the defendants in the civil lawsuits are the Broward County School Board, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office (BSO), Broward County Sheriff’s officer Scot Peterson, campus monitor Andrew Medina and Henderson Behavioral Health Inc. of Florida.

The suits, filed Wednesday under the Florida Wrongful Death Act, accuse the defendants of negligence for either failing to prevent or stop the massacre.

Attorney for the families said they have worked for more than a year to reach a settlement to establish a fund that would provide millions to compensate the families according to National Public Radio. The lawsuits could be dropped if a broad settlement plan is worked out.

According to the lawsuits, the Broward school board should have warned the high school about past acts of violence by Cruz at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas and other county schools.

The lawsuits charge that the sheriff’s department allegedly failed to implement policies for handling an active shooter situation and should be held accountable for the failure of officers to enter the school immediately after the shooting broke out to “locate and neutralize” the gunman.

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SOURCE: USA TODAY, by Doug Stanglin