Andrew Pollack, whose daughter, Meadow, was killed during the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, would rather have 10 minutes alone with suspect Nikolas Cruz than his money.
ABC News reported Cruz's attorneys told a judge Wednesday that he wants the inheritance from his late mother's estate to go to victims' families or an organization that can help the community heal.
However, Pollack rejected Cruz's offer and asked for something more valuable to him than money.
“I don't want none of his money. I'd rather be alone in a room with him for 10 minutes,” he told ABC News. “If he wants to give that, that's better than any money he could give me.”
He explained that no amount of money will bring back his 18-year-old daughter and said, “When I buried my kid, I buried a good part of me with her.”
Pollack isn't alone in his opinion, either. Patricia Padauy — whose son, Joaquin, was killed — said she doesn't want a “dime” from Cruz.
“He's part of this whole horrible story,” she added. “He's a person who didn't care for people that he shot.”
According to the Sun Sentinel, the issue of his mother's estate became a topic of discussion because a judge is set to determine whether he has too much money for a public defender to represent him. Cruz reportedly possibly has claim to:
- $25,000 from a life insurance policy
- At least a portion of 24 shares of Microsoft stock worth about $2,227
- Annuity payment of $3,333
However, his lawyer, Melisa McNeill, said her office cannot help Cruz access the insurance money, that it's unclear if he has rights to the stocks, and that he doesn't have access to the annuity payment.
“What they're saying is he going to give away the money so he can become indigent,” Alex Arreaza — an attorney for student Anthony Borges, who was shot five times — told ABC News. “That would never fly in any other case. You would be laughed out of court for doing that.”
He added that the law states he has to pay for his own lawyer if he has the money to do so. However, McNeill “is determined to keep this case.”
The Sun Sentinel reported Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer said Wednesday she would not make a ruling immediately. The case is expected to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.