Home General News Texas police abandon victims of Uvlade school shooting, video shows

Texas police abandon victims of Uvlade school shooting, video shows

by Anthony L. Gonzalez

Law enforcement’s response to the shooting at a school in Uvalde that killed 19 children and two teachers was “an abject failure,” with a commander placing officers’ lives above children’s, says Texas Department director Steven McCraw or Public Safety.

During a Texas Senate hearing on the May 24 mass shooting, Mr. McCraw told lawmakers that “terrible decisions” were made by the field commander and that the officers who arrived on the scene had not received enough training, which left them precious time that may have saved lives.

“There is compelling evidence that the law enforcement response to the attack on Robb Elementary was an abject failure and contradicts everything we have been taught,” Mr. McCraw said.

The police actions after the gunman entered Robb Elementary School and started shooting were closely watched, with many parents and relatives expressing deep anger at the reaction.

Texas police abandon victims of Uvlade school shooting, video shows

One of the delays Mr. McCraw reported was the search for a key to the classroom door where the shooting occurred.

He said police waited to get in while looking for a key; despite the door being unlocked;, there’s no evidence that officers ever tried to see if it was secured.

“There is no way to lock the door from the inside, and there is no way for the subject to lock the door from the inside,” Mr. McCraw said.

The Texas DPS, days after the shooting, said as many as 19 officers waited more than an hour in a hallway outside classrooms 111 and 112 before a tactical team led by the US Border Patrol finally entered.

Mr. McCraw reiterated that during Tuesday’s hearing.

“The officers had weapons, the children none. The officers had bulletproof vests, the children none. The officers had training, but the subject had none. An hour, 14 minutes, and eight seconds – that’s how long the children and teachers in room 111 waited to be rescued,” the DPS director said.

“Three minutes after the subject entered the western building, there was a sufficient number of armed officers wearing body armor to isolate, distract and neutralize the subject,” added Mr. McCraw.

“The only thing that kept a corridor of dedicated officers from entering rooms 111 and 112 was the commander on site, who decided to put the lives of officers before the lives of children,” the director said during the hearing.

Mr. McCraw said the deputy chief, Uvalde Police Chief Pete Arredondo, “was waiting for radio and guns, and he was waiting for shields, and he was waiting for SWAT. Finally, he waited for a key that was never needed.”

Mr. Arredondo said earlier this month that he never considered himself the commander of the incident at the shooting site and that he had not ordered police to break through the building.

The killer took firearms to Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

Mr. Arredondo told the Texas Tribune that he left his two radios outside the school because he wanted his hands free to hold his gun.

He’d said he needed tactical gear, a sniper, and keys to get in, and he kept himself off the doors for forty minutes to avoid firing shots.

Community members and parents of the victims urged Arredondo to resign during a passionate school board meeting on Monday, ABC News reported.

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