Florida high school shooting suspect will plead guilty if death penalty is not an option

From USA Today:

The suspect in the south Florida high school shooting will plead guilty in the massacre if the death penalty is taken off the table, the public defender’s office said Friday.

Nikolas Cruz, 19, admitted he was behind the the 17 killings inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. His lawyers at the public defender’s office say he is deeply troubled and remorseful over the shooting.

“I am overwhelmingly saddened that every system failed. The school system, the mental heath system, DCF, law enforcement and the FBI,” said Broward County Public Defender Howard Finkelstein, whose office is representing Cruz. “Because we failed to stop it, and we could have, we should not kill the person who behaved as we feared but ignored.”

Cruz was charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder. Finkelstein said he is unsure if prosecutors will agree to the idea of pulling the death penalty off the table.

“I hope” they will, he said. “No road map here.”