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Nikolas Cruz protection unexpectedly rests case in Florida college capturing trial

Protection attorneys for accused Parkland, Fla., shooter Nikolas Cruz abruptly rested their case Wednesday, drawing the ire of the presiding choose.

Circuit Choose Elizabeth Scherer accused lawyer Melisa McNeill of ending her protection in an “unprofessional” vogue after calling on simply 25 of an anticipated 80 witnesses to take the stand.

“To have 22 individuals march into courtroom and be ready as whether it is some sort of sport,” the choose stated in a raised voice. “I’ve by no means skilled such a degree of unprofessionalism in my profession.”

Scherer and McNeil accused one another of behaving in an insulting method.

Whereas the jurors weren’t within the courtroom through the heated change, McNeil took challenge with the choose for demeaning her in entrance of her shopper, who pleaded responsible to fatally capturing 17 individuals at Marjory Stoneman Douglas Excessive College on Feb. 14, 2018. He’s ready to see if he’ll be sentenced to loss of life.

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“Fairly frankly, this has been lengthy overdue,” Scherer snapped again at McNeil. “So please be seated.”

Upon being knowledgeable the protection had rested its case, jurors reportedly appeared shocked. Prosecutors have been additionally caught off-guard by Cruz’s counsel’s resolution, telling the choose they wanted extra time to organize their presentation.

Lead prosecutor Mike Satz stated he was nonetheless anticipating to listen to from dozens of extra protection witnesses. His rebuttal is slated to start out Sept. 27 and final roughly two weeks.

The ultimate protection witness to testify was fetal alcohol knowledgeable Dr. Kenneth Jones. He advised the courtroom that in his 50 years of analysis, he had by no means come throughout a start mom with a extra completely documented consuming drawback than Cruz’s mother, Brenda Woodward. He suspects her alcohol consumption led to an untreated disorder that will have contributed to the defendant’s habits.

The jury beforehand heard from witnesses to Woodward’s substance abuse, which included cocaine use, whereas she was working as a Fort Lauderdale prostitute. The protection additionally known as forth therapists and educators who’d witnessed Cruz’s erratic habits.

There had been questions on Scherer being assigned to Cruz’s case. She has by no means presided over a loss of life penalty trial.

With Information Wire Providers

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