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I really have no words for the obscene turn that the shooter's legal defense has taken. Melisa McNeil is deeply unethical misogynist simp who should be banned from practicing law. Now, granted, the jury is voting on whether the shooter should receive the death penalty or just get life in prison, but to argue that the actions of a depraved child-murderer should really be blamed on his mother is kind of the worst example of 'how we can blame a woman for a man's crimes' that I've yet to come across.

Actually they're blaming his birth mother for being a drug addicted prostitute and his adoptive mother for being a single mother who didn't have him committed to a psych facility. Absolutely vile.

Lawyers for a Florida school gunman have asked a jury to spare him the death penalty, arguing that his "brain was irretrievably broken" owing to a difficult childhood.

Nikolas Cruz, 23, pleaded guilty last year to killing 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on 14 February 2018.

The trial will determine whether he is put to death or jailed for life.

The case is the deadliest mass shooting to reach a jury trial in the US.

On Monday Melisa McNeil, Cruz's lead lawyer, said her client had been exposed to drugs and alcohol while in his mother's womb, citing this as a contributing factor to the massacre.

"Because of that, his brain was irretrievably broken, through no fault of his own," she said, calling him a "damaged person", and describing his run-ins with school officials and police throughout his childhood in an adopted home.

"We must understand the person behind the crime," Ms McNeil told the jury of seven men, five women and 10 alternate jurors.

Cruz's half-sister, Danielle Woodard, also testified that her mother had abused drugs while the future school shooter was developing in "her polluted womb". She said her mother had told her that she was raped, reports the Miami Herald.

Ms Woodard, who is herself awaiting trial on a carjacking charge, described their mother as "horrible". As she prepared to give evidence on Monday, her half-brother nodded at her across the court.

When the trial began on 18 July, prosecutors argued that the defendant deserved to die for the "goal-directed, planned, systematic murder - mass murder - of 14 students, an athletic director, a teacher and a coach".

Jurors were shown gruesome video evidence from the crime scene, as well as video of the attacker calmly ordering a drink from a nearby shop minutes after the massacre, and later of him attacking a guard in jail.

They were also taken to the fenced-off school building where they toured the preserved crime scene. Balloons and cards for Valentine's Day were still scattered around the freshman building where Cruz fired around 150 shots from a semi-automatic rifle.

In her defence arguments, Ms McNeil argued that the seeds of the seven-minute massacre were sown years earlier, when her client's biological mother was working as a drug-addicted prostitute.

The first defence witness on Monday was a recovering addict who said she worked as a prostitute with Cruz's late birth mother, Brenda Woodard, in the 1990s when she became pregnant with the boy.

Carolyn Deakins said Woodard had abused cocaine, marijuana and alcohol throughout her pregnancy, and that "she didn't care" because she planned to put the baby up for adoption.

Cruz's adoptive father died shortly after he came into the home, and his adopted mother, Lynda Cruz, had ignored troubles he was having at school, his lawyer said.

She removed him from psychiatric programmes that could have helped him curtail the violent episodes he was having as a young child in pre-school, Ms McNeil said.

Deeply in debt after her husband's death, Lynda Cruz had refused to have the troubled youth committed to a mental hospital because she did not want to stop receiving his Social Security benefits cheque each month, according to Ms McNeil.

The adoptive mother, who died several months before the attack, bought him a BB gun and airgun before getting him a rifle for his 18th birthday.

At the time of his guilty plea last October, Cruz said he was "very sorry" for the shooting.

All 12 jurors must vote unanimously in order for him to be put to death.

Parkland gunman's brain irretrievably broken, jury hears Archive Link

I really have no words for the obscene turn that the shooter's legal defense has taken. Melisa McNeil is deeply unethical misogynist simp who should be banned from practicing law. Now, granted, the jury is voting on whether the shooter should receive the death penalty or just get life in prison, but to argue that the actions of a depraved child-murderer should really be blamed on his mother is kind of the worst example of 'how we can blame a woman for a man's crimes' that I've yet to come across. Actually they're blaming his birth mother for being a drug addicted prostitute and his adoptive mother for being a single mother who didn't have him committed to a psych facility. Absolutely vile. > Lawyers for a Florida school gunman have asked a jury to spare him the death penalty, arguing that his "brain was irretrievably broken" owing to a difficult childhood. >Nikolas Cruz, 23, pleaded guilty last year to killing 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on 14 February 2018. >The trial will determine whether he is put to death or jailed for life. >The case is the deadliest mass shooting to reach a jury trial in the US. >On Monday Melisa McNeil, Cruz's lead lawyer, said her client had been exposed to drugs and alcohol while in his mother's womb, citing this as a contributing factor to the massacre. >"Because of that, his brain was irretrievably broken, through no fault of his own," she said, calling him a "damaged person", and describing his run-ins with school officials and police throughout his childhood in an adopted home. >"We must understand the person behind the crime," Ms McNeil told the jury of seven men, five women and 10 alternate jurors. >Cruz's half-sister, Danielle Woodard, also testified that her mother had abused drugs while the future school shooter was developing in "her polluted womb". She said her mother had told her that she was raped, reports the Miami Herald. >Ms Woodard, who is herself awaiting trial on a carjacking charge, described their mother as "horrible". As she prepared to give evidence on Monday, her half-brother nodded at her across the court. >When the trial began on 18 July, prosecutors argued that the defendant deserved to die for the "goal-directed, planned, systematic murder - mass murder - of 14 students, an athletic director, a teacher and a coach". >Jurors were shown gruesome video evidence from the crime scene, as well as video of the attacker calmly ordering a drink from a nearby shop minutes after the massacre, and later of him attacking a guard in jail. >They were also taken to the fenced-off school building where they toured the preserved crime scene. Balloons and cards for Valentine's Day were still scattered around the freshman building where Cruz fired around 150 shots from a semi-automatic rifle. >In her defence arguments, Ms McNeil argued that the seeds of the seven-minute massacre were sown years earlier, when her client's biological mother was working as a drug-addicted prostitute. >The first defence witness on Monday was a recovering addict who said she worked as a prostitute with Cruz's late birth mother, Brenda Woodard, in the 1990s when she became pregnant with the boy. >Carolyn Deakins said Woodard had abused cocaine, marijuana and alcohol throughout her pregnancy, and that "she didn't care" because she planned to put the baby up for adoption. >Cruz's adoptive father died shortly after he came into the home, and his adopted mother, Lynda Cruz, had ignored troubles he was having at school, his lawyer said. >She removed him from psychiatric programmes that could have helped him curtail the violent episodes he was having as a young child in pre-school, Ms McNeil said. >Deeply in debt after her husband's death, Lynda Cruz had refused to have the troubled youth committed to a mental hospital because she did not want to stop receiving his Social Security benefits cheque each month, according to Ms McNeil. >The adoptive mother, who died several months before the attack, bought him a BB gun and airgun before getting him a rifle for his 18th birthday. >At the time of his guilty plea last October, Cruz said he was "very sorry" for the shooting. >All 12 jurors must vote unanimously in order for him to be put to death. [Parkland gunman's brain irretrievably broken, jury hears](https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-62640447) [Archive Link](https://web.archive.org/web/20220824013703/https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-62640447)

23 comments

[–] BlackCirce 🔮🐖🐖🐖 62 points

It’s amazing how women’s polluted and corrupted wombs and demonic parenting practices never produce female mass shooters

I knew a girl who had the similar problems (birth mom gave her fetal alcohol syndrome and took drugs while pregnant, she was in foster care before being adopted by shitbag adoptive parents, could never catch a break in life, etc). But, Somehow, she managed to never murder anyone!

women’s polluted and corrupted wombs and demonic parenting practices

Haha, I want this quote emblazoned over this lady-lawyer's face.

It really is miraculous, isn't it? I'll never quite figure it out. A mystery this profound, you'd think scientists would be working hard on it ...

Deeply in debt after her husband's death, Lynda Cruz had refused to have the troubled youth committed to a mental hospital because she did not want to stop receiving his Social Security benefits cheque each month, according to Ms McNeil.

So instead of lamenting a system where a woman can be thrown into poverty if her husband has the audacity to die; they're making her look like a greedy monster for prioritizing keeping a roof over her and her son's heads

Also, it's extra shitty that the adoptive mother isn't even alive to defend herself from these accusations

Neither of the women are. Blame the dead mothers. Obviously it’s their fault 🙄

I didn't catch that the birth mom is dead, too. Damn. So this lawyer's strategy is to blame the two women who are conveniently too deceased to refute any wild accusations she throws out there.

Hell, she might as well accuse the dead adoptive father of sexually abusing the scrote while she's at it! Why not? He's not here to deny it!

[–] assignedpooratbirth trans-wealthy 3 points

she might as well accuse the dead adoptive father of sexually abusing the scrote while she's at it! Why not? He's not here to deny it!

Except he’s a man, so they’d never blame him, even if it somehow turned out that WAS the cause. Hosseini was only 50% right; men and women’s accusing fingers BOTH will always find a woman.

You can't take a court case and attack people with it. The law says lawyers have to use every available defense, and we must have lawyers who defend the defenseless in order for the system to be fair. If the accusations are nonsense, the jury will see through them. Attacking a lawyer for doing the job assigned to her is just as misogynistic as the defense you're complaining about. You're basically saying the lawyer believes all this stuff, when it's highly unlikely as believing your client is never a necessity to law. Spreading hateful comments against another women while she is fulfilling her role, however, is very unnecessary. This thread is kinda sickening. Not every lawyer has the luxury of being Chase Strangeo and doing only those cases that give her the feels. Shit head people probably only can be defended in shit head ways, and lawyers have to use precedences already set, so if the state is full of shit heads, there isn't much choice.

Thank God I found your comment lol I thought I was in the twilight zone. This woman is doing her JOB and the users here are just flinging venom at her.

There was a really tragic case recently in the UK where a young boy took his own life, he was placed on life support in the ICU until they could get a legal injunction to turn his life support off. The mother ended up having some crazy Christian organisation get involved and pay all her legal fees whilst they dragged the case through the Supreme Court and tried to appeal to both the UN and European court of human rights.

The Christian organisation were clearly just out there making a name for themselves and using the tragedy to further their own agenda. The mum (who did do some not great things) was dragged over the coals on forums I followed - especially over the seemingly endless appeals, she did post a lot of attacks towards NHS staff and posted pictures of her poor son in the ICU but honestly she was a grieving mum who lost a 12 year old in the worst way possible - and she found him. Of course she lashed out and didn’t behave rationally!

Anyway my point was, when it was being dragged through the courts I saw some people commenting on the lawyer and how he was pushing some seriously stupid points of view or things that plain contradicted themselves - someone quite rightly pointed out that even though the case was going to lose eventually and life support be turned off, it was important for the lawyer to put on a good show and argue until the end, go down every avenue and put up a good fight because at least then it’ll look like he went down swinging.

This absolute maniac shot up a school and then calmly went and ordered himself a drink after a massacre, you can’t let someone loose in society who behaves like that no matter what happened to cause that

The only question is whether he will get the death penalty or life in prison. Him being let back into society is not on the table. And all of the things his lawyer raised are 100% valid mitigating factors in terms of arguing against the death penalty. It would, in fact, be unethical for his lawyer to not make these arguments.

She is a defense attorney, likely court appointed, on a death penalty case. Unlike the woman who represented Johnny Depp, she is not shamelessly promoting misogyny to advance her personal and professional interests. Attacking a woman and calling her unethical for doing her job is ridiculous and embarrassing.

Spreading hateful comments against another women while she is fulfilling her role, however, is very unnecessary.

She's probably doing it to get paid and for her own cred. I feel justified in saying that she's committing some vile and profoundly unethical professional fuax pas and I will criticize her for it, and for choosing to participate-- in the worst way by setting more legal precedents for female bystanders to be held guilty for men's offenses-- in a system of justice that is systemically stacked against women once you look at the verdicts for women's crimes vs men's crimes.

Feminism doesn't mean giving all women a pass on the virtue of being feamale when their actions are literally anti-woman.

I fail to see how any of that is relevant. Judge should not be letting it in IMHO. Why we get so bent out of shape over "fair" sentencing and "humane conditions" for murderers and rapists is beyond me.

Thank God this kid is in Florida, and at least De Santis will not allow him to trans himself so he can rape his way through a life sentence.

it looks to me like they have been assessed and been found sane, so this is the last strew when they can't pull the crazy card.

Exactly. Would only be relevant if he had pled insanity. He pled guilty. These are all arguments that he can't be rehabilitated and will just present a danger to the rest of the prison population IMHO, if anything. I guess the judge figures if the jury wants him to fry, then he's going to give it the best chance of not being overturned on appeal. Might be a backhanded way of making an ineffective assistance claim though, since I don't see how this argument helps him at all personally. IDK, it's really ridiculous how hard it is to execute in the US. Downvote away, but the older I get, the more I believe we really need to be penalizing certain crimes as harshly as we possibly can.

Personally I don't really agree with executing people who plead guilty though. Seems to disincentivize guilty people from coming clean. But if anyone deserves to be hanged or fried, it's that monster.

I am not american we don't kill prisoners in the UK and I don't think anyone should.

Reason 1 they could be innocent, loads of people have been locked up for decades pleading innocent and finally been vindicated by new evidence or advancements in science.

Reason 2 if you are religious they are going to burn in hell anyway so whats the rush.

Reason 3 if you are not religious why let them off into the peace of the void avoiding decades of prison.

How many children had drunken abusive dads and dead beat dads?

no one ever uses them as an excuse in court.

Even Johnny Depp, whose father was physically abusive, blamed his mother for being mean or some shit and had nothing but praise for dear old dad. I. Hate. Men.

[–] assignedpooratbirth trans-wealthy 3 points

My mother ALSO abused cocaine, marijuana, and alcohol while pregnant with me and my siblings, and I have had the desire to kill 0 people. It’s not the women, it’s not the drugs, and it’s not even abuse that turns people into this. It’s male depravity. That is IT.

Gees I can't imagine being a juror on a case like this. I pray they never call me for something like this.