Florida school shooting suspect due back in court

A video monitor shows school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz, left, with public defender Melisa McNeille, making an appearance before Judge Kim Theresa Mollica in Broward County Court. (Susan Stocker/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP, Pool)
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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Florida school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz is due back in court for a status hearing on his death penalty case.

The hearing is set Thursday afternoon in Broward County Circuit Court. A number of matters could come up ranging from the pace of defense interviews of witnesses to a potential setting of a tentative trial date.

The 20-year-old Cruz is accused of killing 17 people and wounding 17 others in last year's massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. He is also accused of assaulting a jail corrections officer.

Cruz's attorneys have said he will plead guilty in return for a life prison sentence. Prosecutors have insisted instead on seeking the death penalty.

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