When Nikolas Cruz opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s Day, killing 17 people, the public quickly learned of his younger brother, Zachary Cruz.
Zachary Cruz has not spoken to the media since his brother made international headlines, but he has taken to Instagram to speak out about the shooting and express how he feels about it.
A close evaluation of Zachary Cruz’s Instagram @Zachtheskaterkid since the shooting suggests that he is emotional and remorseful about what his brother did.
On Friday, March 2, 2018, Zachary posted a picture on his Instagram story of 17 lit up angels for the shooting victims, at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas recreational park with text that says, “Can’t even describe how I feel.”
On Saturday, March 3, 2018, Zachary posted a picture on his Instagram story of the memorial outside of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School with text that reads, “Pain in the air”.
Following the Parkland school shooting, it was reported that over 45 police calls in total were made to the Cruz home between 2008 and 2017. Of those 45 calls, nearly 25 were in response to Zachary. Both of the brothers were adopted by their mother Lynda, who died of pneumonia in November 2017.
Shortly after the school shooting, Zachary, 18, was involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital (Baker Acted) for evaluation.
On Wednesday, a Broward County grand jury formally charged Nikolas Cruz with 17 counts of premeditated murder, and 17 counts of attempted murder, a 34-count indictment.
On Wednesday, Zachary Cruz posted a picture of the Broward County jail and another picture on his Instagram story that says, “Don’t believe everything you hear or read about me and my brother.” These pictures were posted the same day it was announced that his brother Nikolas has been formally charged for murdering 17 people.
Zachary Cruz’s Instagram account only contains one post, a video of Zachary skating at West Boynton Parks and Recreation in Florida.
Instagram stories disappear after 24 hours, which is why Zachary Cruz’s Instagram account only contains one post. Laura Loomer captured screenshots of the posts before they expired. Loomer reached out to Zachary Cruz for comment, but he has not yet replied.