UPDATE: Brother of Parkland gunman says there’s time to avoid next school shooting


Zachary Cruz, the brother of Parkland gunman Nikolas Cruz, said Thursday he wants to start a program to stop school bullying that he hopes to bring to communities nationwide.

Read The Post's complete coverage of the Parkland shootings

Cruz and Nexus Services, a Virginia organization that represented him in a legal action against the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, on Thursday unveiled We Isolate No-one at a news conference in Washington.

Cruz told reporters he wants to start a network of chapters in middle and high schools and has already launched a 24-hour anti-bullying hotline. 

“Schools across the country have ticking time bombs in them. We can’t be surprised when the next bomb goes off,” said Cruz, who has said he may have “acted too hard” toward Nikolas prior to the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that killed 17 students and staff members and injured 17 others.

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Nexus, a legal-services organization that is advocating for Cruz and is providing him with a home and a job as he serves out a probation sentence and seeks to complete his high-school education, is funding the program. 

Nexus CEO Mike Donovan said it plans to spend about $1 million on WIN, which Nexus said will raise awareness for students who are “isolated, bullied and treated inhumanely.”

Zachary Cruz starts new life with aid of controversial group

Cruz is listed as the group’s executive director. “The plan is for Zach and a staff of two to help create locally-led student organizations,” Donovan said.  

Donovan said the group will try to ensure that calls made to the hotline — 800-329-5507 — are addressed by school administrators.

Zachary Cruz has been in the news since the night of Feb. 14 and especially since March 19, when he was caught trespassing at the Parkland school. Authorities said he was riding his skateboard near the building where the shootings took place.

How Palm Beach County schools are safer since the Parkland shooting

Broward County authorities held Zachary Cruz initially on $500,000 bail following his arrest, as prosecutors said he showed some of the “same flags” as his brother. Bail for trespassing charges is usually $25. A judge later ordered Cruz released on probation.

Cruz was jailed again in April when a Broward County official said Cruz had violated the terms of his probation when he drove by Park Vista High School in suburban Boynton Beach. A judge later released him from jail again and allowed him to serve out the rest of his probation under the supervision of Nexus officials in Staunton, Virginia, about 150 miles southwest of Washington.

Zachary and Nikolas Cruz lived with a family friend in a Lantana-area mobile-home park from late 2017 to early 2018, following the death of their mother. Nikolas moved out of the home and back to Broward County in the weeks prior to the Parkland shooting.

Cruz also through Nexus officials has alleged mistreatment at the hands of Broward County officials while he was in that county’s jail and when Broward officials were monitoring his movements in Palm Beach County.

Nexus has said it still is considering legal action even after dropping a contempt action against a Broward official this month.


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