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The Latest: Suspect legally purchased at least 7 long guns

The Latest: Suspect legally purchased at least 7 long guns

The Latest: Suspect legally purchased at least 7 long guns
Photo Credit: Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP, Pool
Mourners hug as they leave the funeral of Alaina Petty, in Coral Springs, Fla., Monday, Feb. 19, 2018. Petty was a victim of Wednesday's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Nikolas Cruz, a former student, was charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder on Thursday. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

The Latest: Suspect legally purchased at least 7 long guns

The Latest on the deadly Florida high school shooting (all times local):

11 p.m.

A law enforcement official says the man charged with killing 17 people at a Florida high school legally purchased at least seven long guns, including an AK-47-style rifle he bought less than a month ago.

The official is familiar with the investigation but isn't authorized to discuss it and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The suspect, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, legally purchased an AR-15 that authorities say he used in Wednesday's shooting. Federal law allows those 18 and over to buy rifles, and Cruz passed background checks necessary to obtain the weapons.


6 p.m.

Authorities in Florida say Stoneman Douglas High School, the site of last week's deadly shooting rampage, will remain closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

The statement issued by the Broward County Schools on Monday said "our hearts remain with the victims and families ... as our community copes with the aftermath and recovery process from this senseless act of violence."

The statement says the goal is to initially allow staff to return by the end of the week to the school in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were fatally shot last Wednesday. The statement did not elaborate on when students might be able to return or when classes might resume.


3:45 p.m.

Hundreds of sign-carrying, chanting protesters have converged on a downtown Los Angeles park, demanding tougher background checks and other gun-safety measures following last week's deadly school shooting in Florida.

About 500 protesters gathered in LA's Pershing Square shortly before noon Monday.

Many chanted, "Ho, ho, hey, hey, our kids, not the NRA. Others held signs proclaiming, "Our Children Are Counting On You."

Last week's shooting killed 17 people at Florida's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

One of Monday's protesters, Samantha Dorf, tells The Associated Press she supports the Second Amendment right to bear arms but believes stronger background checks for gun-buyers are needed.


3:25 p.m.

A prominent psychiatrist is cautioning survivors that they may want to limit the funeral services they attend to close friends after 17 people were fatally gunned down at a Florida high school last week.

Dr. Francisco Cruz, lead psychiatrist at Ketamine Health Centers, says those survivors shouldn't feel obligated to attend all 17 funerals. He also says overexposure to news coverage and social media posts about the shooting may be more harmful than attending a series of funerals.

Cruz says going through the "funeral process" can help people get through tough times. He says the ideal situation is to confront trauma "head on with the support" and to seek out counselors, pastors or others as needed.


2:30 p.m.

More than 1,500 mourners have thronged a church for the funeral of 14-year-old student Alaina Petty, one of the 17 people killed in last week's shooting rampage at a Florida high school.

Petty was a freshman and one of 17 people killed in Wednesday's attack at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Family members spoke at Monday's funeral about how the teen had enthusiastically joined fellow Mormon youth for cleanup efforts after Hurricane Irma struck Florida in September. Her father, Ryan Petty, also spoke about the support the victims' families have received from their church, the community and others worldwide.

The funeral was held at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Coral Springs, not far from the school that Alaina Petty attended.


1:30 p.m.

Florida school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz has appeared in court for a procedural hearing.

Cruz said nothing at Monday's hearing in Broward County Circuit Court, the first he attended in person and not via teleconference from jail. He kept his head down and did not appear to make eye contact with the judge or others in the courtroom, though he responded briefly to someone on the defense team at the end of the hearing.

The hearing concerned the rules going forward of how documents would be sealed. Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer said she was in favor of openness whenever possible.

Cruz is charged with killing 17 people and wounding many others in Wednesday's shooting attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which he once attended. His lawyers have said he will plead guilty if prosecutors agree not to pursue the death penalty. No decision has been made on that.


12:30 p.m.

State Sen. Bill Galvano, a Republican and incoming Senate president, says the Florida Senate is preparing a sweeping package of legislation in the aftermath of the deadly shooting at a high school.

The legislation includes new age restrictions for gun purchases, a ban on bump stocks and gun violence restraining orders.

Seventeen people were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week and legislative leaders saw firsthand the building where the shootings took place.

The Senate is considering a wide array of measures that also include boosting spending on mental health programs for schools and giving law-enforcement greater power to involuntarily hold someone considered a danger to themselves.

Nineteen-year-old Nikolas Cruz is facing 17 counts of murder in the Wednesday afternoon shooting.


11:15 a.m.

The White House says President Donald Trump supports efforts to improve the federal gun background check system after a school shooting in Florida that killed 17 people.

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Monday that the president had spoken to Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, about a bipartisan bill designed to strengthen the FBI database of prohibited gun buyers.

Sanders said, "While discussions are ongoing and revisions are being considered, the President is supportive of efforts to improve the Federal background check system."

The bill would penalize federal agencies that fail to provide the necessary records and reward states that comply with federal grant preferences and other incentives.

Trump has been a strong supporter of gun rights and the National Rifle Association.


7:50 a.m.

The couple who took in the Florida school shooting suspect after his mother died says he told them he was sorry after the shooting.

Speaking Monday on ABC's "Good Morning America," James and Kimberly Snead said they've only seen Nikolas Cruz once since the shooting that killed 17 when they briefly saw him at the police station.

Kimberly Snead says she yelled at him and "really wanted to strangle him more than anything." The couple says Cruz told them he was sorry.

The Sneads also said the person who's been shown to the world since the shootings isn't the person they knew when he lived with them. They said Cruz was very polite and followed all their rules.

Cruz is facing 17 counts of murder in the Wednesday afternoon shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.


12:50 a.m.

Student survivors of the deadly Florida school shooting who hope to become the face of a revived gun control movement are on a potential collision course with President Donald Trump.

Several of the students have criticized the president, whose election was strongly supported by the National Rifle Association and who ran on a platform opposing gun control.

Trump spent the weekend in South Florida, only an hour's drive from Stoneman Douglas High School where 17 people were fatally shot last week. His only mentions of the massacre came in tweets Saturday contending the FBI was too focused on the Russia investigation to respond to warnings about the alleged shooter and mocking Democrats for failing to pass gun control.

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