“Soon she’ll be gone on be a professional football player player. She will receive a law degree and, perhaps, become one of most successful business negotiation lawyers world will see,” Ilan Alhadeff said in a Broward County courtroom on Tuesday, testifying in in death penalty trial of his daughter is a killer.
“She was supposed to get married, and I was going to father-daughter dance, he said voice break. “She would have a beautiful family, four children, live in fabulous house — beach house on in side.
“All those who plans came to an end with Alyssa murder,” he said.
Families of 17 people killed in The Parkland school shooting continues Tuesday, offering victim impact statements to illustrate the toll the murders have taken as jurors decide whether to sentence the shooter to death. death.
To recommend death verdict, the jury must be unanimous. If they do, the judge can choose follow recommendation or sentencing Cruz to life in prison instead.
To make their decision the jury will hear prosecutors as well as defense lawyers claim aggravating and extenuating circumstances – Cruz’s reasons should or should not be executed. Victim statements add another layer giving to families and friends of victims of their own day in court, although the judge told the jury that the statements should not be considered as aggravating circumstances.
“We were family Unit ism of five always trying to fit in world set up for even numbers,” said Tom Hoyer, whose 15-year-old son Luka Jr. of three – killed. “Two, four, six- sitting tables in a restaurant. two, four, six-ticket packages in events. Things like what.”
But the Hoyers are no longer family of five and never again will it world feel good now that we family of four,” Hoyer said.
“When Luke died, something was missing in me,” he said. And I will never, never get over this feeling.”
‘I will never get over It’
Witness’s testimonies parents of 14 killed students concentrated not only on who them children were, but on who they will never become an endless catalog of things left undone and unsaid.
Nicholas Dvoret, captain of high school swimming team just got a scholarship at the university of Indianapolis when he was killed, his mother, Annika Dvoret, testified on Tuesday. He wanted study finance and move to Boston with his girlfriend.
“Nick had big goals – more than most of us dare dream of”,” she said. Next to his bed, he pinned a note that read: “I want become a Swedish Olympian and go to Tokyo 2020 to compete for my country. I will give All I have in my body and my mind to achieve the goals that I have set.”
“Now,” said Annika Dvoret, “we will never know if he reached his goal go to the Olympics.
Jennifer Guttenberg, mother of fourteen-year-Old Jaime, told the court, watching her daughter’s friends and classmates grow up up and achieving what Jaime will never achieve is “excruciatingly difficult”.
Family gatherings and holidays are hard too, with one less room at the table and no Jaime to keep “everyone upbeat and laughing”.
“There is unity, but no celebration,” Guttenberg said. “Among all there is deathly silence, since they do not want bring up Jaime’s name for cause hurt but not want forget her too.
“I will never get over It. i will never get past this,” she said on Monday. “My life will never, ever be the same.”
“Our lives are shattered”
On Monday, Cruz had no visible reaction to anything. of victim statements about the impact, though one of his defense lawyers were seen wiping away a tear, as were at least two members of jury.
“It has been four years and four months since he was taken from us by his friends and his familyPatricia Oliver said. of her son, who was 17 years old when he was killed. “We miss him more than words can say and love him dearly,” she said, adding, “our lives have been shattered and changed forever and ever.”
Joaquin’s sister, Andrea Guersi, said she was 6’1″. baby brother was “energetic, bright, loud, confident, strong, empathetic, understanding, intelligent, passionate, outgoing, playful, loving, competitive, rebellious, cheerful, loyal and constantly talking up when he felt that something was wrong just.”
Victoria Gonzalez also took Stand on Tuesday. Day of shooting, she became Joaquin’s girlfriend, Gonzalez told the court, but they already called each other “always kindred spirits”, and she described him as “the embodiment of magic, the embodiment of love”. His name, she says, “is engraved in the deep of my soul.”
Kelly Petty, mother of victim Alaina Petty, described at the end of 14-year-star as “very loving person”.
“She loved her friends, she loved her family and, most importantly, she loved God,” said Kelly Petty. of her daughter. “I’m heartbroken that I won’t be able to watch her get amazing young the woman she has become.”
Alena’s sister Megan echoed this sentiment, telling the court, “I would love to see her grow up. up. She would be a blessing to world.”
Gene Hoyer, mother of Luc Hoyer, told her 15-year-old sonroom remains same. His glasses and charger are still on the nightstand and his clothes remain intact, she testified. She becomes physically ill when she moves anything in room, she said.
Meadow Pollack mother, Shara Kaplan, asked the jury to formulate how her daughters death affected her, she would have to break out her heart and show they were destroyed in a million pieces.
“(Meadow death) It has destroyed my life and my opportunities of ever living a productive existence,” she said.
Carlos Suarez and Sarah Weisfeldt of CNN contributed to this report.