By Isabel Indresano 2/15/2018
The FBI is investigating a YouTube comment that was posted 5 months ago by an account owned by the name of the suspected Parkland high school gunman, Nikolas Cruz. The comment read, “I’m going to be a professional school shooter.”
A YouTube user notified the FBI of the comment last September, but the identity of the speaker was not discovered. Buzzed News first reported the comment from Cruz on a video by Ben Bennight, a Mississippi video blogger, and bail bondsman. The 36-year-old content creator noticed the comment and immediately tried to contact the FBI.
Bennight sent a screenshot of the comment to an FBI tip line email address, but he said the address was invalid. He then called the FBI and agents from the Mississippi field office conducted an interview with him. He told the agents he had no information on the user, and the comment was removed from his video by YouTube. Jeff Pegues of CBS News reported that there was no follow-up from the FBI after the one conversation.
Police arrested 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz after the teen opened fire at his former high school on Wednesday. 17 were killed and 14 were injured, according to hospital officials.
Bennight spoke with the FBI again about the comment the day of the shooting, according to a law enforcement official involved in the investigation. Special agent Robert Lasky of the Miami Division of the FBI said at a press conference Thursday that the FBI received information of the comment last year. Lasky says the comment is being reviewed, but investigators are unsure it was posted by Cruz.
The YouTube account under the name of Nikolas Cruz has been deleted.