Trump slams FBI's handling of tip on Florida school shooter

President Donald Trump lashed out at the FBI late Saturday, describing its failure to follow up on a tip about...

Posted: Feb 19, 2018 4:34 AM
Updated: Feb 19, 2018 4:34 AM

President Donald Trump lashed out at the FBI late Saturday, describing its failure to follow up on a tip about Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz as "very sad."

The FBI has said it failed to act on information about Cruz, who massacred 17 people Wednesday at his former high school in Parkland.

The shooting reignited demands for tougher gun laws, with student survivors gathering in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday to criticize Trump and other lawmakers for their inaction.

But Trump shifted blame to the FBI, saying it is devoting too much time to investigating his presidential campaign.

"Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter," the President tweeted a day after he visited hospitalized survivors of the shooting.

"This is not acceptable. They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign -- there is no collusion. Get back to the basics and make us all proud!"

Trump maintains denials

The White House has vehemently denied collusion with Russia.

On Friday, the Justice Department announced that special counsel Robert Mueller has issued indictments on 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities for allegedly meddling in the 2016 presidential election, charging them with conspiracy to defraud the United States.

Mueller convened a grand jury as part of his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election as well as any possible connections between Russia and Trump campaign associates.

The sweeping indictment describes an unprecedented campaign by Russia to influence the election, affirming the longstanding conclusions of the US intelligence community.

It is at odds with Trump's repeated questioning of those conclusions.

Trump has said that despite the charges, the Russian meddling had no effect on the outcome of the election. In a separate tweet late Saturday, he said "the only collusion was between" Russia and Hillary Clinton.

FBI's admission

The FBI has acknowledged receiving two tips that appear to relate to Cruz ahead of the shooting. One was a January 5 call to a tip line from someone close to him -- one that the FBI said it failed to act on.

The caller provided information about "Cruz's gun ownership, desire to kill people, erratic behavior, and disturbing social media posts, as well as the potential of him conducting a school shooting," the bureau said.

The information should have been assessed as a "potential threat to life," but the proper protocols weren't followed and the FBI's Miami office was not notified, the agency said.

FBI Director Christopher Wray said the bureau is investigating what happened.

"We have spoken with victims and families, and deeply regret the additional pain this causes all those affected by this horrific tragedy," Wray said in a statement.

The FBI's admission prompted Florida Gov. Rick Scott to call on Wray to resign.

In addition to the call, a video blogger said he warned the FBI in September about a possible school shooting threat from a YouTube user with the same name as Cruz.

An FBI agent confirmed a field officer in Jackson, Mississippi, received the tip and interviewed the person who shared it.

But no additional information was found to help identify the person who posted the comment and no connection was made to South Florida, said FBI special agent Robert Lasky, who is in charge of the Miami division.

The FBI's missteps have raised questions about whether it could have prevented the shooting. Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered a review Friday into how the Justice Department and FBI respond to indications of potential violence.

The Justice Department will review not just how the Cruz tip was missed, but how authorities respond to similar situations, Sessions said.

"We will make this a top priority," Sessions said in a statement. "It has never been more important to encourage every person in every community to spot the warning signs and alert law enforcement. Do not assume someone else will step up -- all of us must be vigilant. Our children's lives depend on it."

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, also called for the House and Senate to conduct investigations into how the FBI reviews public tips in similar instances.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 768624

Reported Deaths: 13993
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1055891807
Lake569801031
Allen43032699
St. Joseph37344568
Hamilton37335426
Elkhart29783470
Tippecanoe23503230
Vanderburgh23240405
Porter19580327
Johnson18843392
Hendricks18089323
Madison13575347
Clark13552198
Vigo12869256
LaPorte12578225
Monroe12575178
Delaware11155198
Howard10693237
Kosciusko9792124
Hancock8761150
Bartholomew8274157
Warrick8084157
Floyd8043182
Grant7378181
Wayne7239201
Boone7211105
Morgan6924143
Marshall6345117
Dubois6283118
Cass6096112
Dearborn602178
Noble600890
Henry5958111
Jackson517277
Shelby511598
Lawrence4928127
Gibson463696
Montgomery459292
DeKalb456785
Clinton456055
Harrison454077
Huntington417882
Whitley416745
Steuben411260
Miami406073
Jasper401655
Knox388691
Putnam385762
Wabash370384
Adams353856
Ripley351971
Jefferson343487
White340154
Daviess3089100
Wells304081
Greene295185
Decatur292693
Fayette286564
Posey282635
Scott281058
LaGrange277772
Clay274949
Washington254637
Randolph247783
Jennings239749
Spencer238731
Fountain235850
Starke229959
Owen222959
Sullivan221643
Fulton208945
Jay203032
Carroll197722
Orange191756
Perry189939
Vermillion181144
Rush177627
Tipton173347
Franklin172535
Parke155916
Pike142534
Blackford138032
Pulaski123748
Newton123336
Benton109715
Brown106243
Crawford105816
Martin92515
Warren87915
Switzerland8378
Union73610
Ohio58411
Unassigned0429

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1125420

Reported Deaths: 20490
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1305631493
Cuyahoga1173952263
Hamilton825481261
Montgomery536581062
Summit489381014
Lucas43799834
Butler40064614
Stark33876939
Lorain26072510
Warren24959312
Mahoning22738613
Lake21482396
Clermont20425261
Delaware19169138
Licking16879227
Trumbull16829492
Fairfield16825207
Medina15880276
Greene15565254
Clark14366308
Portage13450218
Wood13358201
Allen12064245
Richland11748213
Miami11047228
Wayne9275228
Columbiana9216236
Muskingum9144137
Pickaway8755123
Tuscarawas8724255
Marion8716140
Erie8146166
Ashtabula7280179
Hancock7050135
Ross7031165
Geauga6975153
Scioto6726108
Belmont6224179
Lawrence5964104
Union591649
Jefferson5729162
Huron5644122
Sandusky5498130
Darke5448131
Seneca5380128
Washington5373111
Athens527260
Auglaize507787
Mercer491785
Shelby484397
Knox4621113
Madison448066
Ashland446198
Defiance439499
Fulton436875
Putnam4358104
Crawford4120111
Brown410462
Preble3956107
Logan392279
Clinton391466
Ottawa376481
Highland366668
Williams357378
Champaign349860
Guernsey331554
Jackson321954
Perry299050
Morrow294943
Fayette289350
Hardin279665
Henry277467
Coshocton273061
Holmes2726102
Van Wert252365
Gallia251150
Adams250958
Pike244837
Wyandot235557
Hocking222963
Carroll201449
Paulding180142
Meigs151540
Monroe137945
Noble137939
Harrison115438
Morgan111724
Vinton87517
Unassigned04
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