Parkland shooting victim criticizes sheriff, school after release from hospital

Saturday, April 7, 2018

A week after the last victim of February's school shooting in Parkland, Florida, was released from the hospital, Anthony Borges made it known in a press conference Friday he and his family were not pleased with several circumstances around the massacre.

Borges, 15, was shot five times -- in the lungs, abdomen and legs -- as he held shut a door at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School to prevent alleged shooter Nikolas Cruz from gunning down students inside.

Borges attended the Friday news conference still in a wheelchair, and still recovering from his serious injuries.

The 15-year-old sat silently as his family's attorney, Alex Arreaza, read from a letter written by the student, according to Miami ABC affiliate WPLG.

"I want all of us to move forward to end the environment that allowed people like Nikolas Cruz to fall through the cracks," the letter said. "You knew he was a problem years ago and you did nothing. He should have never been in school with us."

Cruz, 19, who admitted to the shooting after fleeing the Feb. 14 attack, according to his arrest affidavit, was a former student at Stoneman Douglas High School. Cruz attended the school from Jan. 13, 2016, to Feb. 8, 2017, according to records obtained by WPLG. He was expelled from school after getting into a fight with his ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend, according to fellow classmate Victoria Olvera. Bullet fragments were also found in Cruz's backpack after the fight, a former teacher and classmate told ABC News in the wake of the attack.

Borges' father, Roger, also criticized Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel for taking a photo of Borges while he was recovering in the hospital after the shooting. The photo was shared on social media by the Broward County Sheriff's Office.

"I am not grateful for the picture that Israel took of my son in that condition, in any way, and I think it was a mockery to have sent me a $100 check from the school board," Roger Borges said in Spanish. "I think it showed a great lack of respect."

He was indicted on 34 counts, including 17 counts of first-degree premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder, for the 17 people injured in the attack, including Borges.

Borges was credited with saving 20 students who took refuge in a classroom during the massacre.

"None of us knew what to do. So, he took the initiative to just save his other classmates," Borges' friend Carlos Rodriguez told "GMA" in February.

Rodriguez, who was also at Friday's press conference, said he and his friend are both dealing with PTSD, saying, "We have been scarred for the rest of our lives."

Arreaza said the family plans to sue the estate of Cruz's late mother.

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