Sheriff Israel confirmed the shooter's age and said he used an AR-15 firearm with multiple magazines. Authorities say he opened fire outside the high school, which enrolls more than 3,200 students, then continued his rampage inside the building.
Cruz is a former student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where the shooting happened. Though many employers and schools teach the "Run, Hide, Fight" method, Hardy said SROs are trained to go straight toward the suspect.
School board officials said staff and students heard what sounded like gunfire shortly before dismissal, and the school went on an immediate lockdown.
"We will pay for the funeral expenses of these poor victims", Bondi said. Some reported victims were seen being carried out of the school. "It's horrifying, as we're finding more information about it, I just want them to know we're thinking about them".
All the students are out right now and police have swept each building to make sure everyone was evacuated.
"He is in custody and we have already begun to dissect his websites and the things on social media that he was on, and some of the things that have come to mind are very, very disturbing", Israel said. As for where the suspected gunman might have gotten the weapons, Nelson said "I have no idea".
Brittani later was able to escape the school.
- United States president Donald Trump tweeted his condolences saying: "No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school".
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders also told reporters that the previously scheduled White House briefing would be canceled "in light of the tragedy".
"We'll provide continuous support for all of the students and families impacted by this heartbreaking situation".
The attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, about 72 kilometres north of Miami, the attack sent hundreds of panicked students fleeing into the streets while dozens of police and emergency services personnel swarmed the area. "He was going class to class just shooting at random kids", he said.
Adding to the confusion, students said they'd had a fire drill that morning.