Friends were once few and far between for Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz, 19, but officials say he is now being inundated with love and affection from crazed fans looking to offer their support.
Cruz, who killed 17 people at a Florida high school in February, is receiving stacks of fan mail and love letters sent to the Broward County jail, along with hundreds of dollars in donations to his commissary, according to the Sun-Sentinel. Women, teen girls and even older men have penned letters to the mass murderer, sending photos (some of them racy) tucked inside colorful greeting cards.
“I reserve the right to care about you, Nikolas!” wrote a Texas woman in neat blue handwriting in a letter addressed to the jail’s P.O. box, the newspaper reported. Officials said the letter was sent just six days after Cruz carried out a bloody Valentine’s Day massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.
In an a letter stuffed inside an envelope covered in hand-drawn hearts and smiley faces, a teenager wrote, “I’m 18-years-old. I’m a senior in high school. When I saw your picture on the television, something attracted me to you.”
“Your eyes are beautiful and the freckles on your face make you so handsome,” she added, describing herself as white with big, brown eyes. ” … I’m really skinny and have 34C sized breasts.”
Meanwhile, a woman in Chicago sent several suggestive photos, including a snapshot of her cleavage, another of her in a revealing bikini eating a Popsicle and a close-up of her butt as she bends over, according to the Sun-Sentinel. Broward County lawyer Howard Finkelstein, whose office is defending Cruz, said there are piles and piles of letters to sort through.
“In my 40 years as public defender, I’ve never seen this many letters to a defendant,” Finkelstein said. “Everyone now and then gets a few, but nothing like this.”
Cruz hasn’t received any of his mail, however, because he’s on suicide watch. According to the Sun-Sentinel, the jail opens inmates’ mail and letters deemed obscene or a threat to security are returned to the sender. Finkelstein said Cruz has received some religious letters praying for his soul and encouraging him to seek God. He said officials won’t read him any fan mail, however, or share letters with sexually explicit photos.
For Finkelstein, the danger lies in the fact that impressionable boys and girls are beginning to look up to this mass shooter, admiring his fame and notoriety.
“The letters shake me up because they are written by regular, everyday teenage girls from across the nation,” Finkelstein told the newspaper. “That scares me. It’s perverted.”
Cruz’s crazed fan club also extends to Facebook, where several groups of empathizers have come together to discuss the case and ponder how they can help him avoid the death penalty. In a now-secret group titled, “Nikolas Cruz — the First Killer” on woman asked for photos to send to the accused shooter.
“I want him to see how many people love and care for him and all the beautiful faces,” she wrote in the group.
As for Cruz’s commissary account, it currently holds $800, thanks to Cruz’s devoted fans, Finkelstein. Jail records show that from Feb. 15 through March 5, a total of $650 was deposited. However, the county deducts $8 per day for “subsistence fees.”
News of the fan mail comes just weeks after Cruz’s brother, Zachary Cruz, was overheard telling the suspect how popular he is now, especially with the ladies, and was considering starting a fan club for him.
“[Zachary] has been heard and observed discussing how popular his brother is now,” Broward Assistant State Attorney Sarahnell Murphy said in court earlier this month after Zachary Cruz was caught trespassing at Stoneman Douglas.
“There is discussion of starting some sort of pen pal or fan club and how many girls he’s capable of attracting — referring to his brother, Nikolas,” she said.