In connection with the February 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which resulted in the deaths of 17, including 14 students and three school employees, a jury has recommended that Nikolas Cruz be given a life sentence without the chance of parole.

Cruz’s punishment will eventually be officially decided by Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer. She cannot, however, deviate from the jury’s recommendation of life in prison under Florida law.

Also read: Parkland shooter trial: Prosecutors ask jury to recommend death sentence for Nikolas Cruz

Cruz was sentenced following a lengthy trial that lasted several months. The gunman, now 24 years old, was urged to get the death penalty by the jury, with the prosecution’s argument that his crime was particularly wicked or cruel.

Cruz’s sentence, which the gunman’s defence attorneys had advocated for, defaults to life in prison without the unanimous jury recommendation necessary by Florida law. They stated that Cruz had mental illnesses and developmental impairments throughout his life.

Also read: Who is Nikolas Cruz, the infamous Parkland shooter?

Judge Scherer has set the sentencing date for November 1

As the jury’s suggestions for what should happen to Cruz were being read aloud in court, the jurors were either gazing down or straight ahead.

None of the jurors turned their gaze toward the family of the victims, some of whom were clearly in tears. Cruz was sitting motionless with his head bowed.

Before the reading even began, Gina Montalto’s parents started clutching each other’s hands, and they started crying throughout the reading. The mother of 15-year-old Luke Hoyer was sobbing as well.

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The parents of 14-year-old Alaina Petty and Jaime Guttenberg held their heads in their hands.

Geography teacher Scott Beigel’s mother sat with a stone-faced expression as the victim’s stepdad sobbed and held her.

This morning, just after their second day of deliberations began, the jury decided whether to condemn Cruz to death or life in prison without the chance of release.