Judge won’t close hearings in Florida school shooting case

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — A Florida judge has refused to close pretrial hearings to the media and public in the case of the man accused of killing 17 people in a 2018 high school mass shooting. Broward County Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer on Tuesday rejected a motion by defendant Nikolas Cruz’s lawyers claiming that intense pretrial media coverage jeopardizes his right to a fair trial. The motion had been opposed by The Associated Press and other media outlets. The 22-year-old Cruz faces the death penalty if convicted in the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Seventeen people died and 17 were wounded in that shooting.

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