"All I heard was 'get on the ground, get on the ground, '" a witness to the arrest said.
Officials are now examining Cruz's digital profile. "They took him in and it's a classic case of no good deed goes unpunished", said Jim Lewis, an attorney representing the family. Cruz was expelled from the high school past year for disciplinary reasons.
The boys were left in the care of a family friend after their mother died, family member Barbara Kumbatovich, of Long Island, said.
He legally purchased an AR-15 rifle about a year ago. The brothers lived with a family friend after her death, but Cruz wasn't happy and moved in with a friend's family around Thanksgiving.
"Just a awful day for us", said the superintendent of the county's school district, Robert Runcie, who spoke of "numerous fatalities". He did have the key, however. They are cooperating with authorities, he said.
Seventeen people were killed in the shooting, and 15 more were injured.
"To my understanding, he is on suicide watch", Weekes said, as he explained the importance of the defendant's right to legal counsel despite the multiple murder allegations against him. Most teachers try to steer them toward some kind of connections. "We've trained the kids what to do, and the frustration is that we did everything that we were supposed to do... and still have to have so many casualties... it's very emotional", Melissa Falkowski said on Anderson Cooper 360.
The FBI said it was assisting local law enforcement with the investigation. He described that content as "disturbing". She remembered him as a quiet and shy young man who would nearly change personality when angry.
"He was that weird kid that you see. like a loner", he added.
The shooter had already had "a lot of problems", Coke said, recalling an incident during middle school when Cruz kicked out a window.
CNN reported that Cruz was expelled from the high school for unspecified disciplinary reasons. "Potentially there could have been signs out there.
He was racist and he was just insane", one student told 10ABC News.
Administrators sent an email to teachers warning them about Cruz, Gard told the paper.