Reading Time: < 1 minute Nikolas Cruz (Photo: Instagram)
Reading Time: < 1 minute

The teenager accused of killing 17 people in this week’s Florida high school shooting reportedly has a history of animal abuse.

Nikolas Cruz, 19, has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder, following Wednesday’s attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland outside Miami.

According to reports, the suspect allegedly attacked and killed chickens and frogs, posting images described as ‘gruesome’ on his social media.

Animals

In response to these allegations, Stephanie Bell, Senior Director of Cruelty Casework at PETA, said: “It is no surprise to PETA that…[the suspect is] said to have talked about shooting small animals.

“These include lizards, squirrels, frogs, and a neighbor’s chickens, and reportedly sent his dog to a neighbor’s house to attack the pigs there.”

Violence

She added: “The FBI has identified cruelty to animals as a warning sign of more violence to come, and many school shooters and serial killers have a history of abusing animals.

“While the issues of gun control and mental health rage on, one simple way to prevent future acts of violence is for local law-enforcement officials to pursue the strongest penalties possible in cruelty-to-animals cases – for everyone’s sake – and for those who hear about or witness animal abuse to report it.”

Maria Chiorando

Maria is a news and features writer for Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. She was previously the editor of Plant Based News for over 3 years.