Stoneman Douglas school shooter Nikolas Cruz was referred to a program designed to shield delinquent students from potential arrests, Broward County officials now confirm following repeated denials.
Infowars was one of the first to put a magnifying glass over bombshell revelations presented by a journalist at The Conservative Tree House, which uncovered possible connections between policies implemented in 2012-2013 to the massacre in Parkland, Fla. on Valentine’s Day in 2018.
Seeking to improve their record in an effort to secure expanded state and federal funding, district officials led by new superintendent Robert Runcie – who had been brought in from the Chicago school system – implemented a strategy designed to essentially sweep the issue of student criminality under the rug, while also addressing the ‘racial injustice’ of the system.
A 2013 “Collaborative Agreement On School Discipline” between the School Board of Broward County and the Sheriff of Broward Country, as well as the Fort Lauderdale Branch of the NAACP and a variety of other state and local legal bodies, can be found HERE. It established the framework for the now-infamous ‘PROMISE’ program.
In short, the agreement established new standards and practices by which law enforcement would seek alternatives to arresting students who had committed crimes or “minor disturbances,” with a specific focus on “students of color, students with disabilities and LGBTQ students,” who were “disproportionately impacted by school-based arrests for the same behavior as their peers.”
After months of consistently rejecting any connection between Cruz and the PROMISE program, Broward officials are now backpedaling, blaming ‘scattered record-keeping’ for their erroneous statements.
“Two sources with knowledge of Cruz’s discipline records told WLRN he was referred to the so-called PROMISE Program for a three-day stint after committing vandalism at Westglades Middle School in 2013,” reports WLRN.
A spokesperson for Superintendent Runcie has confirmed that Cruz was indeed assigned to the program after the incident.
There is dispute whether he completed the initial placement – which is semantics as far as Florida Senator Marco Rubio is concerned.
“I was repeatedly told that the Parkland shooter was never in the Promise Program I was asking questions about,” Rubio tweeted. “Now it turns out that in fact he was.”
Speculation has arisen that Superintendent Runcie dabbled in further deceptive wordplay in order to deflect attention from Cruz’s involvement in PROMISE.
“Contrary to media reports, the district has no record of Nikolas Cruz committing a PROMISE eligible infraction or being assigned to PROMISE while in high school,” Runcie wrote in a March 23 op-ed for the Sun-Sentinel.
However, the initial infraction that led to Cruz’s referral to the program would have taken place in middle school, not high school.
“Runcie’s careful formulation contains a falsehood, several omissions, and obfuscations,” Max Eden, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, told Breitbart News in March. “It doesn’t cover middle school, where Cruz racked up about two dozen offenses and was transferred into an intensive behavior management school – without ever getting an arrest record.”
Runcie later claimed that there was no link between Cruz and PROMISE, sans any caveat that could be predicated upon a timeline.
“Let me reiterate this point – Nikolas Cruz, the shooter that was involved in this horrific accident at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, had no connection to the PROMISE program,” Runcie flatly insisted in an April interview.
“I’m not going to allow a shift from what our focus needs to be to a fictitious narrative that’s being made up about a successful program that we have in Broward County that has no connection to the shooter or the situation at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.”
Dan Lyman: Follow @CitizenAnalyst