President Trump Discusses School Shootings With Survivors at White House; National Rifle Association CEO Says Schools Needs To be “Hardened”; CNN Town Hall on Gun Violence with Sen. Rubio and Family of Victims; FL High School Surveillance Camera Was on 26 Minute Delay; More Info on Nikolas Cruz; U.S. Women Hockey Wins Olympic Gold; More Medals for Team USA; Deaf Man Charlton LaChase To Remain in Custody During Federal Trial; Deaf Houston Mom Arrested for Not Taking Dying Daughter to Hospital; Armed School Resource Officer at Parkland Did Not Approach Shooter
Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Thursday, February 22. Ready for news?
Yesterday at the White House, President Trump hosted a “listening session” — with survivors and family/friends of victims from the south Florida high school shooting attending.
There was emotional testimony from a father who lost his daughter, Meadow, when she was shot 9 times on the third floor. The father said we as the country has failed our children, that we should protect our schools the same way we protect airports or stadiums. He said he was not going to sleep until it is fixed.
There was a mother there who had her 6-year old son die from the Sandy Hook shooting 5 years ago who told Trump he needs to act.
Student survivors talked about how they were scared while the shooting was going on — and said it is too easy for people to buy an AR-15 rifle.
President Trump sat there, listening to the testimony for around an hour. He then shared his ideas: bringing back more mental institutions for people who seemed unstable but haven’t committed a crime, allowing a number of trained teachers to carry weapons (with a bonus in pay), or having military veterans provide security, and work on improving background checks.
Today Trump tweeted that he would push for comprehensive background checks with an emphasis on mental health, raising the age to 21, and ending sales of bump stocks. Trump said he hopes Congress will do something on this issue.
He also tweeted that the leaders at the NRA are great people and great American Patriots.
Trump will meet with lawmakers today and with state governors next week to continue this discussion.
There was criticism of Trump’s idea of arming teachers, saying “more guns” is not the solution, concerns on if the teacher accidentally shot a student, or if police thought the teacher was the shooter.
There are also teachers and educators who say they need more resources at school such as books, supplies, more staff, time for relationship building — instead of more guns.
The NRA’s CEO, Wayne LaPierre, gave a speech today in which he blamed Democrats for making the school shooting into a political discussion — that they wanted to hide the failures of school security, failure of family, failure of America’s mental health system, and the failure of the FBI.
He said parents, teacher unions, school systems, and others should “harden” their schools, including using effective, trained armed security.
He called some Democratic lawmakers “European socialists” and said they want to make you all less free by rolling back Second Amendment gun protections.
The NRA has a big influence on our government, especially Republican lawmakers. They spent $30 million in ads supporting Donald Trump during the 2016 elections.
Last night CNN hosted a town hall meeting on gun violence. Florida Senator Marco Rubio ( R ) was present, and he was questioned by a father, Fred G. who lost her daughter in the Florida school shooting.
He said the Senator was weak in his comments on gun control. He asked if guns was a factor in the “hunting of our kids” and if he would work to do something about it.
Sen. Rubio said gun laws alone wouldn’t solve the problem, but said he didn’t think 18-year old people should be able to buy a rifle, and he would support changing laws for that.
Then he said banning assault weapons would not have prevented the shooting.
The father said his daughter was shot in the back as she ran away, shot by an assault weapon.
Sen. Rubio said the shooter should not even access to any gun — then explained that the ban would not “work” because there was a ban in New York, but gun makers just modified them to remove the grip, but the guns would still fire the same caliber bullets and in the same way.
Rubio said it would be better to make sure that dangerous people cannot buy a gun of any kind.
A student from the school, Ryan D. told the Senator that he grew up in schools with drills for active shooters and just had to go to the state capitol to speak out — he said why do the students have to do this?
Sen. Rubio said it was unfortunate that the U.S. has not made progress on this, but thinks there can be changes — he explained a concept “Gun Violence Restraining Order” - which allows a person to report to the police about someone in their family, then the person’s guns will be taken away, they can’t buy a gun (but they can appeal).
Rubio said he thinks if there was this law in Florida, it could have prevented Nikolas Cruz from buying/owning guns.
The Senator closed with saying what the students are doing is making a difference, and hopes to see new laws in Florida.
Some new information related to the Florida high school shooting and about Nikolas Cruz:
— The school’s surveillance camera, on the day of the shooting, was on a 26 minute delay. When police officers responded, they didn’t know this — so when they saw Cruz walking in the hallways, they thought he was there in real-time. But he was already gone to a Wal-Mart. Officers were confused until they found out why.
Police said it didn’t make a difference with the number of victims, but they could have started looking for Cruz faster. It is not known why the tape was on a delay.
— CNN reported that a neighbor who took in Cruz and his younger brother right after his adoptive mother died — Rocxanne D. and her son — had called police several times on him.
This home is not the same as the Snead family, who later allowed Cruz to live with them.
Rocxanne said Cruz would have explosive, violent outbursts. She didn’t allow Cruz to bring guns inside, and when her son suspected Cruz hid a gun in the backyard, he reported it to the police, but they didn’t find anything. This was the day after Thanksgiving.
Police went to the home again four days later because Cruz was punching at the wall and fought with Rocxanne’s son. She called 911 and notified that Cruz bought a gun from Dick’s (store) last week and had tons of ammo, then warned he had held a gun to others.
When an officer arrived, he talked with Cruz and the son, who hugged it out. Cruz apologized and said he was suffering from his mother’s death.
A short time after this, Cruz left the home, went to live with a friend, then stayed with the Snead family, this time with a collection of guns.
— Another neighbor of Cruz, Paul Gold, said when his mother died, he drove him to her funeral. There was only two people there — Cruz and his brother — to put an urn of the mother’s ashes into her wall cemetery.
Paul said Cruz didn’t have any emotions and was upset that nobody came, that nobody cared about his mother.
— On the day of the shooting (Valentine’s Day) — police officers rushed into Rocxanne’s home with a bomb squad checking the area.
Yesterday was a great day for the U.S. at the Winter Olympics with several medals.
The U.S. women’s hockey team defeated Canada in a shootout. Canada had won four straight Olympics and was hoping for their fifth, but Americans claimed the gold — our last time was in 1998, which was the first time women’s hockey became an Olympic sport.
Another gold medal for the U.S. was in the men’s ski halfpipe — David Wise won his second straight gold medal. The silver also went to an American, Alex Ferreira.
American skier Mikaela Shiffrin got a silver in the women’s alpine combined, which gives her two medals for this Olympics — the other a gold in the giant slalom.
The U.S. is now fourth in the medal race, behind Canada. Norway is in the lead with Germany second.
Here is an update on the Charlton LaChase case — the Deaf man from Florida who was arrested by the FBI for making terroristic threats on February 4, I reported about this two weeks ago using information from a Miami area Spanish newspaper, el Nuevo.
There has been no updates on that story, but I was in touch with the reporter, Johanna Alvarez, and I asked her if she knew of updates.
She explained that Charlton appeared in federal court on Tuesday to discuss on if he should remain in custody during trial and if the prosecution had probable cause to charge him.
The judge is Shaniek M. Maynard. She said Charlton must remain in detention because he might leave the country.
Court documents show that Charlton made a phone call — it was recorded — from the St. Lucie County jail and said he wanted to leave the U.S. and go back to Costa Rica to be with a beautiful woman he met there who will help him.
The judge said there was probable cause for a trial. His next court date is on March 5.
Charlton was arrested on Feb. 4 after traveling in Costa Rica. I previously reported (from the article) that during this trip, Charlton texted a female family member that he would behead her and her children, rent a truck and hurt and kill people, that he wanted to be the first deaf terrorist in U.S. history.
So that’s what happened in court. I had previously reached out to Charlton’s wife, Dulce, but she said she couldn’t comment because of the pending investigation.
Judge Maynard: http://sdfla.blogspot.com/2017/03/shaniek-maynard-is-your-new-ft-pierce.html
Previous Report: https://www.facebook.com/TheDailyMoth/videos/812590665609502/
Several people sent me links to an article about a 20-year old Deaf woman in Houston, Kaitlyn Elizondo, who was charged with injury to a child after investigators said she did not take her 2-year old daughter to the hospital when she was sick — the girl later died.
ABC 13 news reported that Kaitlyn’s daughter was vomiting, having abdominal pain, and couldn’t eat or drink anything on September 26. Later, the girl couldn’t walk.
On September 29, Kaitlyn’s boyfriend found the girl unresponsive and foaming at the mouth. She was taken to the hospital, but died there.
Kaitlyn was charged in October, but was not arrested until Tuesday.
ABC 13 posted a video of Kaitlyn facing a judge. There is was an ASL interpreter in front of her, who signed out the case number.
Her bond was set at $50,000. Jail records says she was released yesterday.
I was in touch with a person who knew Kaitlyn — she said the father was not living with her at the time.
The Broward County Sheriff Israel said during the south Florida high school shooting, there was an armed school resource officer present.
There were questions on where he was and why he didn’t stop the shooting.
Sheriff Israel said he did go to the school building, outside of it, but did not go inside. The officer’s name is Scott Peterson.
The sheriff said he has resigned. Reporters asked him what he should have done. Israel said he should have went inside and killed the shooter.
Correction: His name is Scot, not Scott.
That is all for this week. Follow “The Daily Moth” on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Have a wonderful weekend and stay with the light!