Man jailed five years for cyberstalking Parkland school massacre families like shooter Cruz, Ted Bundy
A 22-year-old man was sentenced Monday in a federal court in Florida to more than five years in federal prison after he was found guilty of cyberstalking victims of the Parkland massacre.
Brandon Fleury, 22, was convicted in October of using Instagram accounts named after the suspected shooter, Nikolas Cruz and serial killer Ted Bundy, to harass the families of students who died during the 2018 massacre.
The shooting on February 14, 2018 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, killed 17 people and 17 people were injured.
Brandon Fleury, 22, was sentenced Monday in a federal court in Florida to more than five years in prison after being found guilty of cyberstalking victims of the Parkland school massacre
Fleury was convicted in October of using Instagram accounts named after the suspected shooter, Nikolas Cruz. The school suspect, portrayed at a hearing in 2019 in the Broward Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, is scheduled to be tried later this year.
A portrait of mass murderer Ted Bundy, who was responsible for a series of murders in the states of Washington, Utah and Florida in the 1970s. Fleury was also convinced of the use of Instagram accounts named after the serial killer
It was the deadliest high school shooting in American history.
Despite autism, prosecutors say that Fleury knew what his “activities were doing.”
The prosecution had insisted on the maximum sentence of 20 years. Judge Rodolfo Ruiz of the US district rejected the request Monday in the federal court of Fort Lauderdale.
Evidence showed that between December 2018 and January 2019, Fleury used different Instagram accounts to threaten and harass the families of the victims.
In some messages, he claimed kinship and even pretended to be Cruz. In others, he relied on the names of serial killers such as Bundy.
“I killed your loved ones hahaha,” a message said. ‘Did you like my Valentine’s gift? I killed your friends, “another said.
A memorial has been erected outside of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School following the one-year anniversary of the shooting on February 18, 2018, the worst that broke out at a high school in American history
The shooting at Marjory Stoneman’s Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, killed 17 people and injured 17 people. Law enforcement officers are depicted outside the school on the one-year anniversary of the tragedy
One of his usernames was “nikolas.cruz.killed.your.sister,” showing legal information.
Under the username, he wrote the relatives of one victim and said, “Hahaha, she had her whole life before her and I STAKE IT FROM HER,” according to legal documents.
The father of victim Alex Schachter, Max Schachter, was also the target. The school security proponent who had shown interest in the Florida governor, received a message from @nikolasthemurderer on New Year’s Eve about how his son “will never play music again.”
The allegations were traced to an IP address in Santa Ana, where Fleury lives with his father and brother.
“The victims were constantly in fear that the individual would bomb them,” with the messages that would follow in the footsteps of Cruz, assistant American lawyer Ajay Alexander said in court cases.
“The victims deserve justice. They deserve to live in peace and with the belief that they are safe. “
On Fleury’s electronic devices, the authorities also found thousands of stored images of Bundy, images of the targeted victims, and screenshots of the messages he had sent to the victims.
Fleury under the username @ nik.taunts_ wrote about the weapon that Cruz used: “I stole the future of your sister, mate, with the power of my AR-15.”
Fleury had also posted on social media under the name @teddykillspeople, in a reference to serial killer Ted Bundy
From @nikolasthemurderer on New Year’s Eve, the father of Parkland victim Alex Schachter became the target of cruel words about how his son “will never play music again”
“The danger that Fleury brings is clear, and if he gets the chance, there is a real danger that he will try to follow in the footsteps of the mass murderers and serial killers he idolizes,” Alexander said.
There was sufficient testimony during the Fleury trial that he was autistic, although several mental health experts said he understood good about evil.
Yet his lawyer, Sabrina Puglisi, said she had hoped that the judge would weigh his mental problems more heavily when imposing a punishment.
“I think it’s a high punishment given Brandon’s background and other similar situations, but I believe the judge felt the need to have the sentence send a message to others who are on the internet and do this bad behavior,” said Puglisi.
Meanwhile, Cruz, 21, is confronted with the death penalty if he is convicted in the shooting in the Parkland.
His lawyers said he would plead guilty in exchange for a life sentence, but prosecutors have refused the offer.
The Cruz process is expected to start sometime later this year.