Read the Document: Prosecutors to Seek Death Penalty for Parkland School Shooter

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The Broward State Attorney's Office announced Tuesday it will seek the death penalty against the 19-year-old gunman who attacked Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland last month.

In its filing, the state attorney's office cites seven aggravating factors in seeking the death penalty for Cruz, including that the crime was "especially heinous, atrocious, or cruel" and that it involves homicide "committed in a cold, calculated, and premeditated manner".

Defense lawyers said they hope to avoid the death penalty for a man they presented as a struggling teen and orphan, whose mother died November 1.

"This is an opportunity to put the criminal case behind and help the victims' families begin to try and pick up pieces of their lives for our community to heal and to figure out how we stop these things from ever happening again", Finkelstein said last month.

Broward County Public Defender Howard Finkelstein originally offered for Cruz to give a guilty plea in exchange for a life in prison sentence.

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The shooting has reignited the debate over gun control in Florida and across the country.

The troubled teenager's lawyer previously said Cruz would plead guilty if the death penalty was not on the table, Fox News reported. The commission has the power to ask voters to approve changes to the state's constitution. After surgeries, his condition was upgraded to fair.

The announcement came down Tuesday afternoon when they filed a Notice of Intent in his case. He said they need to act because the National Rifle Association has filed a lawsuit against the new law approved by the Legislature.

Shortly before the commission hearing in St. Petersburg, students from Tampa Bay area schools spoke passionately in favor of additional gun regulations, as did the father of a student who attends Marjory Stoneman Douglas. "They're not asking to take away people's guns or their ability to hunt", said John Willis.


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