Parkland shooting: Potential sentencing juror says she can't be on jury because of 'sugar daddy'
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A prospective juror for the sentencing of Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz asked the judge to dismiss her from duty earlier this week, claiming she didn’t have enough time to fulfill her civic duty because she’s both married and has "a sugar daddy."
The selected jurors will eventually determine whether Cruz will face the death penalty or life in prison. He killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where he was once a student, on Valentine’s Day in 2018.
Jurors will have to agree to the death penalty unanimously in order for him to receive such a sentence. Otherwise, he’ll face life in prison without the possibility of parole.
PARKLAND SCHOOL SHOOTER NIKOLAS CRUZ'S SENTENCING PHASE OF TRIAL BEGINS WITH JURY SELECTION
Hours into the jury selection process, Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer asked if she had missed anyone with concerns or questions.
Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz listens to his public defender Diane Cuddihy, right, during a hearing on police body-camera footage at the Broward Courthouse Friday, March 22, 2019 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (Taimy Alvarez/Sun Sentinel/Tribune New
"Did you have a question?" she asks in video of the proceedings, pointing off camera toward one of the prospective jurors who she eventually identifies as "Miss Bristol."
"This is a whole entire month," the woman says. "First of all let me clarify myself, July second is my birthday, July Fourth is my son, and the 18th is my other son."
The judge asks her to speak slower.
"Don't talk too fast, we have to be able to understand...so you said that the July, there's dates in July that you're not available? What are those dates?"
PARKLAND SCHOOL SHOOTER NIKOLAS CRUZ ADDRESSES COURT AFTER GUILTY PLEA: ‘I LOVE YOU’
"July seventh, July fourth, and July 18th....And again, I need to figure out something," Bristol replies. "I have my sugar daddy that I see every day."
"I'm sorry?" the judge asks, with an unmoved expression on her face and cocking her head.
"My sugar daddy," Bristol repeats.
"OK, I'm not exactly sure what you're talking about but we'll--"
"I'm married, and I have my sugar daddy," she says again. "I see him every day."
"OK. All right," the judge says. "Ma'am, we'll come back to you, OK? Thank you."
Judge Elizabeth Scherer speaks to Assistant State Attorney Jeff Marcus during a hearing at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale on Feb. 2, 2022. Cruz previously pleaded guilty to all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attem
Then she instructs jurors whose names are called to fill out a questionnaire before the audio stream is muted.
Bristol wasn’t the only prospective juror to ask to be dismissed. Several cited family commitments, work or previously booked travel plans. Some did not sufficiently speak English, and others had health issues.
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In all, 12 jurors and eight alternates will be selected. More than 120 of the first 160 to appear before Scherer Monday were dismissed. Bristol was among them.
The sentencing phase of Cruz’s murder trial is expected to stretch from June through September.
Fox News' Matteo Cina and The Associated Press contributed to this report. Get updates on this story from FOX News.