Florida Gov. Rick Scott Thursday vowed, in the wake of a horrific school shooting that left 17 people dead, that efforts will be made to "figure this out" when it comes to preventing further violence.
"I can tell you we are going to figure this out," the Republican governor told Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "I want parents to wake up every day and say 'my child is going to go to a safe school.'"
Thursday, Nikolas Cruz, 19, was charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder the morning after the deadliest school shooting in the United States in the more than five years since a gunman attacked the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
Police say Cruz, wearing a gas mask and equipped with smoke grenades and multiple ammunition magazines, opened fire with an AR-15 rifle, killing 17 and leaving 15 others hospitalized, some with life-threatening injuries.
Scott said Thursday that he has spoken with victims' family members, and "they are like me, they are mad."
"How can this be going on in our society?" he said. "We know that something has to change here. We cannot continue to have this violence. We have got to keep our students safe."
Scott said that as a father and grandfather, he can't imagine losing a loved one, and he imagines parents are asking themselves if their children should go to school and if they will be safe.
"We're going to figure this out," he said. "We have got to figure out how to keep our kids in this state."
Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said Wednesday night the state of Florida will pay for the victims' funerals, and Scott said Thursday he knows she's been working on doing that.
"She did the same thing after the Pulse [nightclub] attack," said Scott. "She brought down victim advocates. They were very, very helpful."
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