A Florida judge ruled Monday that surveillance video showing events outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School during the Valentine’s Day massacre that killed 17 people should be made public.
Broward Circuit Judge Jeffrey Levenson agreed with news outlets including The Associated Press that the video should be released. The judge stayed his order until noon Thursday to allow for a possible appeal.
The Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the school board had opposed the video’s release, saying it was exempt from disclosure in part because it was evidence in an active investigation.
The video captures the actions of former Deputy Scot Peterson, who was armed and assigned to the school but never went inside during the shooting, authorities said.
Former Stoneman Douglas student Nikolas Cruz, 19, faces 34 murder and attempted murder charges in the shooting.
Also Monday, a lawyer for Cruz filed a motion to stop the release of any more of his jail medical and behavior records. The motion argued that the records are confidential and the Broward Sheriff’s Office should not have provided them to media outlets last week. The motion noted that Cruz was in an infirmary on suicide watch during the time span documented in the records. The motion also said the records should be released only upon written authorization by Cruz.
As legal proceedings move forward, a local tattoo shop has raised money for victims by offering free tattoos in exchange for donations. Shop owner Chris Blinston said he and other artists began working extra hours at No Hard Feelings shortly after the shooting in nearby Parkland. On Sunday, they planned to do at least 350 free tattoos with a goal of raising $10,000 to support victims. Designs included “MSD Strong” and “Never Again.”
Blinston told the Sun Sentinel that artists donated their time for the event.
One of those getting a tattoo was Steven Porter, 38, who graduated from Stoneman Douglas in 1998. His tattoo was the school’s mascot with the words “always an eagle” underneath.
“The eagle is fierce and strong,” Porter said. “It’s a perfect representation of what the school stands for.”