Report: FBI was aware of YouTuber with name of high school shooter saying he would be ‘professional school shooter’

PARKLAND, FLA. (WSVN) - The FBI had been warned that a YouTube user with the name Nikolas Cruz had posted a comment on a video saying, “Im going to be a professional school shooter,” according to a report from BuzzFeed News.

The report comes after Nikolas Cruz was charged with the murders of 17 people after a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

The comment was made last fall on a YouTube video from Mississippi, and the user “nikolas cruz” made a comment that said, “Im going to be a professional school shooter.” The user who posted the video, Ben Bennight, alerted the FBI upon viewing the comment.

“The next day, I had two FBI agents standing in my office taking down the information, taking down copies of the screen shot and asking me questions that of course I couldn’t answer,” said Bennight. “All that was on my channel was a comment.”

The FBI then contacted Bennight who posted the YouTube video and conducted an interview with him.

“I would like to think they were already investigating this guy, and they had him on the top of their radar, and that is how they ended up contacted me so quickly,” said Bennight. “I wish I could have given them more information.”

After the initial FBI contact, the user who contacted the FBI said no other action was taken by officials.

At Thursday morning’s public briefing, Rob Lasky, from Miami’s FBI division, confirmed that an investigation had been opened.

“In 2017 the FBI received information about a comment left on a YouTube channel,” said Lasky. “No other information was included with that comment, which would indicate a time, location or the true identity of the person who made the comment.”

When asked what went through Bennight’s mind when he found out about the shooting, he said, “Well, the first thing that went through my mind is, ‘I hope they were at least watching the person. I would hate to think this guy was reported and wasn’t on your radar.’ He didn’t confirm or deny whether or not he was.”

BuzzFeed News has added that the username’s link to the shooter has yet to be confirmed.

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