Frozen in horror: Notes from inside the Parkland school massacre site

Bullet holes additionally mark the partitions of the Parkland, Florida, faculty the place Nikolas Cruz killed 14 college students and three workers members.

A lock of darkish hair stays on a flooring greater than 4 years after the physique of a sufferer was taken away. Valentine’s Day items and playing cards are strewn about, as shards of glass crunched beneath of the toes of holiday makers.

These are the unsettling notes from a bunch of reporters allowed to enter the constructing after jurors accomplished their walk-through to offer particulars to media retailers throughout the nation, together with CNN.


We entered from the east stairwell simply as Cruz did. Within the stairwell the place Cruz entered and assembled his gun, a stuffed white teddy bear lay dirtied on the ground subsequent to a bag with Valentine’s Hearts on it, most likely dropped by a fleeing scholar.

In every single place you stroll all through the constructing there are shards of damaged security glass that crunch loudly as you stroll over them. They’re particularly loud and crunchy within the threshold of every door.

ROOM 1218

Brittany Sinitch’s English class: Nobody was killed or wounded right here, however that is the place Cruz fired first his pictures. Textbooks on the desks have been open to a piece discussing Mercutio. A Valentine’s teddy bear was on a desk. A 2017 Stoneman Douglas soccer poster was on the wall — photograph of the crew with the motto: Religion Household Soccer. A pink be aware wishing a Joyful Valentine’s Day sat on a desk subsequent to a worksheet belonging to scholar Sarah Louis. A transparent plastic drink cup sat half-full on a desk, its contents now a darkish brown sludge. On a desk a Valentine’s Day card that reads “I do not identical to you, I actually, actually such as you.”

ROOM 1215

Examine Corridor led by Spanish instructor Juletta Matlock: There’s dried blood outdoors the door the place Luke Hoyer, Martin Duque and Gina Montalto have been killed. Simply contained in the door, some earphones with a protracted wire lay on the ground. The ebook “To Kill a Mockingbird” stays on a desk. On the wall is a poster titled “Let’s Guac About It” with fundamental Spanish phrases: Padre, Madre, Abuelo, Abuela.” On one other wall is a poster of widespread Spanish phrases and colours.

ROOM 1213 — Ronit Reoven’s AP Psychology class:

On the far wall away from the door is a desk with a big pool of blood. That is the place Carmen Schentrup died from a bullet wound to the pinnacle. She and the kids hid behind the instructor’s desk, which is within the southeast nook of the room. In entrance of the desk the place Maddy Wilford lay wounded, the instructor’s desk telephone lay on the ground. On the partitions behind the desk are images of what seems to be the instructor’s household and a 8 X 10 drawing of President Trump with the saying “We’ll win in every part we do.” On the north wall is a bulletin board with about two dozen pockets dimension images of scholars. A lone white sneaker stays on the ground.


Hixon, after he was shot dashing by the west door, took cowl in an alcove in entrance of the elevator about 20 toes from the door. Cruz shot him a second time as he handed, however he remained alive and spent about 10 minutes attempting to stand up, in response to video performed in court docket. There’s a massive bloodstain on the ground and on the wall. A black rubber shoe, presumably, a Croc, lay on the ground there.

Room 1214 — “The Holocaust Room” – Instructor Ivy Schamis’ room

She taught Holocaust Research. That is the place Nick Dworet and Helena Ramsay died.

On the whiteboard is the hashtag #TogetherWeRemember. There are additionally references to eyewitness accounts. On a desk are two yellowed Solar Sentinel newspapers, there are bullet strike marks on desks, laptops nonetheless open, headphones, and a water bottle nonetheless on a desk. On the ground is a tossed 2017-2018 faculty 12 months planner. Blood-stained markings the place Dworet and Ramsay died. Their blood coats a ebook known as “Inform Them We Keep in mind” by Susan Bachrach and “Hearken to the Wind” by Greg Mortenson There’s a Holocaust signal on a bulletin board with the phrases “we’ll always remember”. One desk had a white plug and earbuds on prime. Indicating the speedy method every part unfolded

The educational goal on the board “To pay attention to the world and its environment.”

Room 1216

Nobody classroom had as most of the murdered and wounded as Dara Hass’ English class. A blue folder with Alaina Petty’s identify nonetheless on the desk – proper behind that – between the instructor’s desk and the wall is a big bloodstain. Bullet holes within the partitions.

Proper subsequent to the bloodstain on the ground the place Alyssa Alhadeff and Alaina Petty died – is a handwritten paper about Malala Yousafzai – “the lady who needed to go to highschool” – the paper goes on to say “a bullet went straight to her head however not her mind” ending with “In conclusion, we the folks ought to have freedom for schooling.”

(Notice: Malala is the Pakistani lady who was shot by the Taliban – she has fought to advocate for schooling entry for women and girls).

Essays written by the scholars stay on their desks, by no means to be recovered. “We go to highschool each day of the week and we take all of it without any consideration,” one scholar wrote. “We cry and complain with out realizing how fortunate we’re to have the ability to study.”

On cupboard doorways, a earlier project is on show. It exhibits headstones with epitaphs written by the scholars.

“R.I.P. Right here lies fairly.”

“R.I.P. Right here lies humorous.”

“R.I.P. Right here lies good.”

Subsequent to a shoe on the bottom is a pink Valentine’s Day stuffed animal and balloons.

The pooling of blood appears to be like aged, darkish, caked, flaky.

Desks are coated in a skinny layer of mud, a landline telephone lays upside on the bottom.

At Alex Schachter’s desk – a bloodstain on different aspect of silver bar that connects the plastic seat to the desk.


Close to west stairs – the place Hixon was shot – there’s a discarded shoe.


Quote on hallway between rooms 1221 and 1229

“Dream as should you’ll reside without end, reside as should you’ll die at present.” -James Dean

Additional down the hallway it reads:

“By no means reside up to now however all the time Lear type it.” – nameless

Room 1230

A big coronary heart formed field of Valentine’s Day goodies on a desk.

On one other an open pen and pencil case.

Room 1232

Calculators nonetheless on desks, spiral notebooks nonetheless open to math topic, college students have been engaged on algebra issues.

Room 1231

Clustered Desks

“Class of 2018” images of scholars in informal settings (not formal pics).


Room 1256, Scott Beigel’s classroom:

Getting into the hallway from the east aspect stairs, the very first thing you see is a pool of caked blood that is a lot smaller than others. That is the place Scott Beigel’s physique fell in entrance of classroom 1256. Not like different rooms, the window on his door is unbroken. Beigel died holding the door open. His physique blocked the door from closing. The kids hiding within the entrance of his room have been weak, however Cruz didn’t select to enter it.

Plastic world maps in regards to the dimension of a placemat on most desks. There have been three wall clocks mendacity face down by the door. On Beigel’s desk have been worksheets evaluating Christianity and Islam. On the whiteboard, notes on the 2018 Winter Olympics medal-winners. A deflated Valentine’s Day balloon lay on the bottom.

Room 1255, Stacey Lippel’s classroom:

The door is pushed open — like others to indicate that Cruz shot into it — and a “No Bully Zone” hangs on the within. The inventive writing project for the day is written on the whiteboard: “How one can write the proper love letter.”

The instructor’s desk is to the left and one can think about college students huddled behind it. The desks are in disarray, some pushed on prime of one another from what was described in testimony as a mad rush again to get again inside. Atop one desk is an enviable Valentine’s Day unfold — a big present bag with tissues stuffed inside it, a field of spherical, silver-wrapped candies, and a heart-shaped field.

Shifting down the hallway, dry, cracked rose petals combined with the glass shards lend a cinematic really feel to the scene. There’s a big pool of blood in the midst of the third-floor hallway the place Anthony Borges was injured. An indication above the water fountains has a quote from Star Wars’ Yoda: “Do or don’t. There isn’t a attempt.”

Beneath the water fountains, three massive swimming pools of dried blood mark the spots to the place authorities dragged the our bodies of Cara Loughran, Meadow Pollack, and Joaquin Oliver. A faint path of blood traces the trail of the women’ our bodies from the alcove the place their our bodies fell after being shot. A pool of blood is noticed within the alcove outdoors 1249 the place Pollack and Loughran died. They remained there, injured, after the remainder of the group that was huddled within the alcove with Ernie Rospierski fled down the hallway. Then Cruz returned and shot them once more.

ROOM 1249, Ernie Rospierski

There’s an unfinished chess sport. A good friend of Peter Yang testified they have been enjoying a sport when the fireplace alarm went off.

Room 1250

Valentine’s Day balloons, flower petals, stuffed white bear.

One of the disturbing sights is the alcove outdoors the lavatory the place Joaquin Oliver died. There’s a big pool of blood and holes from bullets that have been fired at him at shut vary. There are blood drops main into the alcove from the primary pictures the place he was wounded. However a lot of the blood is from when Cruz caught as much as Oliver within the alcove and fired. We all know from the proof that Oliver was acutely aware after he was hit. He couldn’t run when the others fled. He heard Cruz coming. He heard the pictures into Pollack and Loughran. He knew he was subsequent. We all know from testimony that he held his arms as much as shield himself. Two bullets within the wall present how useless that try was. There is a lock of darkish hair on the ground close to the place his physique would have been. The nook of a heart-shaped paper Valentine’s Day ornament (maybe was a card) is collapsed, presumably was drenched with blood

Shifting down the corridor towards the west wall, bullets scraped in opposition to the south partitions, a sign that Cruz was aiming for the fleeing college students and never simply randomly firing forward of him.

We see the nook in entrance of the stairwell the place Peter Wang fell after being shot as he ran down the hallway. The wall is drawn into squares resembling search quadrants. It’s stained with darkish splotches of blood and yellow-greenish materials that was described in testimony as mind matter. Pin-sized holes within the wall have circles drawn round them and are marked “fragment D” and “fragment F.”

There are six bullet holes within the window above the place Wang died. Cruz tried to blow the home windows out to shoot the fleeing college students.

Jaime Guttenberg was struck outdoors the stairwell however fell inside. There’s little or no blood the place she fell. The bullet by no means left her physique.

Within the instructor’s lounge, a windowpane dealing with the 1300 constructing has 4 bullet holes. One other windowpane subsequent to it has one other bullet gap. These overlook the courtyard and a car parking zone the place college students have been fleeing.

A poster subsequent to a windowpane reads like so:

“Typical or Troubled?

Discover: Discover if you’re seeing troubling indicators in a scholar.

Discuss: Discuss with the coed

Act: Share observations with faculty psychological well being workers

Altering a life’s course.

College Social Work 754-321-1618

Household Counseling 754-321-1590

Broward Public Faculties”

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