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Texas School Shooting Has Implications for Parkland Shooter’s Trial

Texas School Shooting Has Implications for Parkland Shooter’s Trial

The massacre at Robb Elementary School has left the nation grasping for answers. Families of the victims are grappling with tremendous loss while simultaneously trying to find a reason their loved ones were taken so quickly. Like most school shootings, the Uvalde case has greater implications for similar criminal cases – one of which happens to be in progress now. Keep reading to learn more.

Nikolas Cruz

Nicholas Cruz is on trial for the murder of 17 and wounding of 17 others at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL in 2018. For Cruz, the trial comes at an inopportune time as it reignites the public’s vitriolic hatred for school shooters. There is little sympathy for school shooters and now could possibly be the worst for Cruz and his legal team.

In light of the Uvalde tragedy, the judge assigned to the trial acknowledged the massacre and allowed the prosecution and defense to present their arguments for questioning the jurors about their knowledge of the shooting at Robb Elementary. Attorneys for Cruz requested that the court allow them to reevaluate the jurors for knowledge of the Uvalde shooting to determine whether they would be capable of issuing an impartial verdict.

The Other Side

As for the Parkland community and the families of the 17 victims, the Texas school shooting brings back the horrific memories of their own personal tragedy four years ago. Tom Hoyer, who lost his 15-year-old son in the Parkland shooting tearfully told reporters that he hopes that the parents of the children killed at Robb Elementary find justice and peace more quickly than he and the Parkland parents have.

I know what those families had to endure sitting in a room waiting to hear that their child is laying in a school on a floor. It is heartbreaking, heartbreaking. I hope their journey through all of this is a lot faster than ours,” said Hoyer.

The prosecuting attorney is firmly against questioning jurors and told the court that the trial should continue without delay. She told the court, “Are we going to have to go back to (the jurors) every time there is an incident?” In the past few months alone, there have been over 27 school shootings – at least one per week.

The judge has agreed to the terms and has allowed the defense to ask jurors about their feelings on school shootings in general without mentioning Texas. The trial for the fifth deadliest U.S. school shooting continues as scheduled.

What It All Means

There are countless angles to evaluate in these cases, but the Texas shooting brings up one that many have yet to consider: can jurors be impartial in a school shooting case when there are so many shootings happening that may sway their opinion?

Cruz’s defense team is understandably worried that the Texas shooting may sway the jury in this case. Not only did the shooting occur at an elementary school, but it is also the second-deadliest school shooting in American history. Sandy Hook remains the deadliest, but the Uvalde tragedy is much closer to the public consciousness that has occurred so recently.

The tragedy has been covered by every news station and continues to get prime-time coverage. As more shootings occur throughout the United States, it is impossible to miss headlines depicting the horrors and the fear they instill in the general public.

Defendants have the right to a fair trial, which includes an impartial jury. Historically, jurors are isolated from the public to preserve their impartiality and are selected because of their lack of familiarity with the topic and similar cases. However, hatred for gun violence in schools is at an all-time high and has been building for decades – since Columbine.

Many are beginning to wonder if it is possible to have an impartial jury in a school shooting or if those days are long gone. Cruz and his team also must consider that since the public can not feel justified with a trial for the Uvalde murders, they may take a harsher stance on the easiest target: Cruz.

While it would be a perversion of the justice system, the need for justice is palpable and out of the two school shooters, only one lives to stand trial.


The Uvalde shooting has shaken the nation in a major way that we have not seen since Parkland. Defense attorneys in the Parkland trial are concerned that the recent tragedy may overshadow Cruz’s trial and lead to a harsher sentence out of outrage. Whether that happens remains to be seen, but one thing is clear: the shooting at Robb Elementary School has shifted the public’s perspective on school shooter trials forever.

If you have been accused of a crime, contact The Draskovich Law Group. The Texas shooting was a senseless tragedy that cannot be excused. However, countless innocent people are accused of crimes they did not commit in times of high emotion and fear, leading many of them to prison. Providing quality legal counsel to those accused is more important than ever to maintain the integrity of the justice system for the future.


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