White nationalist disavows connection with shooter

Posted at 8:28 PM, Feb 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-16 20:35:48-05

PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) - A white nationalist appears to have disavowed his own claim that Florida school-shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz was a member of his obscure group - a story that may have originated as a prank by online trolls.

Law enforcement officials said they didn't have any evidence to support the claim that Republic of Florida leader Jordan Jereb made in interviews with several news organizations.

Jereb told The Associated Press on Thursday that Cruz had participated in paramilitary drills in Tallahassee, where his group is based.

The Anti-Defamation League also said it spoke with Jereb, who told it that Cruz was associated with his group. Later, the ADL noted that someone posting in a discussion forum for far-right extremists said the claims were part of an elaborate attempt to dupe news outlets.

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