Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Texas school shooting: Police 'wrong' for waiting to storm gunman as students pleaded for help

World May 28, 2022 08:47AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
2/2 © Reuters. Flowers, candles and signs are left at a memorial for victims of the Robb Elementary school shooting, three days after a gunman killed nineteen children and two teachers, in Uvalde, Texas, U.S. May 27, 2022. REUTERS/Marco Bello 2/2

By Brad Brooks and Gabriella Borter

UVALDE, Texas (Reuters) - Frantic children called 911 at least half a dozen times from the Texas classrooms where a massacre was unfolding, pleading for police to intervene, as some 20 officers waited in the hallway nearly an hour before entering and killing the gunman, authorities said on Friday.

At least two children placed several emergency calls from a pair of adjoining fourth-grade classrooms after 18-year-old Salvador Ramos entered on Tuesday with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, according to Colonel Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Ramos, who had driven to Robb Elementary School from his home after shooting and wounding his grandmother there, went on to kill 19 children and two teachers in the deadliest U.S. school shooting in nearly a decade.

"He's in room 112," a girl whispered on the phone at 12:03 p.m., more than 45 minutes before a U.S. Border Patrol-led tactical team finally stormed in and ended the siege.

The on-site commander, the chief of the school district's police department in Uvalde, Texas, believed at the time that Ramos was barricaded inside and that children were no longer at immediate risk, giving police time to prepare, McCraw said.

"From the benefit of hindsight where I'm sitting now, of course, it was not the right decision," McCraw said. "It was the wrong decision, period."

The disclosure of local law enforcement's delay in pursuing the teenaged gunman armed with a semi-automatic rifle came as the nation's leading gun-rights advocacy group, the National Rifle Association, opened its annual convention 275 miles away in Houston.

Governor Gregg Abbott, a Republican and staunch gun rights proponent who addressed the meeting in a pre-recorded video, seized on apparent police lapses in Uvalde, telling a news conference later he was misled and "livid about what happened."

Abbott denied newly enacted Texas gun laws, including a controversial measure removing licensing requirements for carrying a concealed weapon, had "any relevancy" to Tuesday's bloodshed. He suggested state lawmakers focus renewed attention on addressing mental illness.

'SEND THE POLICE NOW'

Even as the shooting reopened the intractable, long-running national debate over easy access to military-style weapons in the United States, the latest chronology of the Uvalde school attack stirred public dismay, including among the very officials reporting it.

McGraw, whose voice choked with emotion at times, said, "We're here to report the facts, not to defend what was done or the actions taken."

Some of the mostly 9- and 10-year-old students trapped with the gunman survived the massacre, including at least two who called 911, McCraw said. He did not offer a specific tally.

There were at least eight calls from the classrooms to 911 between 12:03 p.m., a half hour after Ramos first entered the building, and 12:50 p.m., when Border Patrol agents and police burst in and shot Ramos dead.

It was unclear whether officers at the scene were aware of those calls as they waited, McCraw said.

A girl whom McCraw did not identify called at 12:16 p.m. and told police that there were still "eight to nine" students alive, the colonel said. Three shots were heard during a call made at 12:21 p.m.

The girl who made the first call implored the operator to "please send the police now" at 12:43 p.m. and again four minutes later.

Officers went in three minutes after that final call, according to McCraw, when the tactical team used a janitor's key to open the locked classroom door.

Several officers had an initial exchange of gunfire with Ramos shortly after he entered the school at 11:33 a.m., when two officers were grazed by bullets and took cover. There were as many as 19 officers in the hallway by 12:03 p.m., when the first 911 call from inside the classroom was received, McCraw said.

Videos that emerged on Thursday showed anguished parents outside the school, urging police to storm the building during the attack, with some having to be restrained by police.

Standard law enforcement protocols call for police to confront an active school shooter without delay, rather than waiting for backup or more firepower, a point McCraw acknowledged on Friday.

Medical experts also stress the importance of evacuating critically wounded gunshot patients to a trauma center within 60 minutes - what emergency physicians call "the golden hour" - in order to save lives.

McCraw described other moments when Ramos might have been thwarted. A school officer, responding to calls about an armed man who crashed a car at the funeral home across the street, drove right past Ramos as he crouched beside a vehicle on school property. Police have said Ramos fired at two people standing outside before scaling a fence onto school grounds.

The door that gave Ramos access to the building had been left propped open by a teacher, McCraw said, in violation of school district security policies.

NRA CONVENTION

The attack, coming 10 days after a shooting in Buffalo, New York that left 10 people dead, has intensified the long-standing national debate over gun laws.

At the NRA meeting, prominent Republicans, including former President Donald Trump and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, doubled-down on arguments that tighter gun laws would do little or nothing to allay the rising frequency of U.S. mass shootings.

About 500 protesters holding crosses, signs and photos of victims from the Uvalde shooting gathered outside the convention, shouting, "NRA go away."

President Joe Biden, a Democrat who has urged Congress to approve new gun restrictions, on Sunday will visit the community of 16,000 people about 80 miles (130 km) west of San Antonio.

Investigators are still seeking a motive for the attack. Ramos, a high school dropout, had no criminal record and no history of mental illness.

Texas school shooting: Police 'wrong' for waiting to storm gunman as students pleaded for help
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Comments (29)
Miriam Morkhul
Miriam Morkhul May 28, 2022 4:07PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Why doesn't Reuters report on the online name "Armand" in this story? It is a crucial detail that allegedly a retired FBI agent was in Discord chat groups with both mass shooters prior to their spree.
Bonney Lake
Bonney Lake May 28, 2022 1:16PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
classic statement from cops: " fear for our lifes" bunch of cowards. f guns and f Republicans.
Brent Dewbre
Brent Dewbre May 28, 2022 1:16PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Very cute
William Smith
William Smith May 28, 2022 1:16PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Bonney, do some fact checking before your ***acts and you will find 95% of shooters are not Republicans.
First Last
First Last May 28, 2022 1:11PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Law-abiding American patriots need their guns to defend against a coup like the Jan 6th one.
First Last
First Last May 28, 2022 1:11PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Scot House  You probably meant to say "nobody had" firearms.  The next "coup like the Jan 6th one" may be more successful if the Retrumplicans get back majority control.
aslam abdul khadar
aslam abdul khadar May 28, 2022 12:43PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Americans pls voluntarily throw ur weapons to us govt.
Ken Roth
Ken Roth May 28, 2022 12:30PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
In the old west they had to deliver their guns to the sherif when they rode into public spaces. That worked
Venkateswarlu Karanam
Venkateswarlu Karanam May 28, 2022 11:14AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
why these killings happening only in us. is not possible to super power to control completely
Picaso Fish
Picaso_Fish May 28, 2022 11:14AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
There not only happening in the us. Maybe it just happens there more often? I don't have any data
Picaso Fish
Picaso_Fish May 28, 2022 11:14AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
remember because of the USA's ridiculous 2 party system everything is polarized and becomes political. From your breakfast to your dinner. etc
taylor jason
taylor jason May 28, 2022 11:05AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
why is the argument always no guns or all guns? can't these 🤡 in Washington meet half way and make assault rifles illegal?
Rubber Necker
Rubber Necker May 28, 2022 11:02AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
There is only one way to deal with a shooter and that is to shoot back so this is why it should be mandatory that every citizen young and old be armed. One crazed shooter against hundreds of armed students wouldn't make it 5 feet inside the door.
Picaso Fish
Picaso_Fish May 28, 2022 11:02AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
great for profits for companies like vsto. Isn't capitalism fantastic? just lovely, profits for all!
Ken Roth
Ken Roth May 28, 2022 11:02AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Give everybody a gun in the classroom I am sure it will lead to less killings. Solid NRA logic for the ignorants
jason xx
jason xx May 28, 2022 10:30AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
If you can't make the connection between easy access to guns and mass shootings you are a F o. o l. Every gun on the street was made for a legal owner. You know how many illegal guns there are available just because of legal owners being careless and not storing them properly?
FMGK Blue
FMGK Blue May 28, 2022 9:08AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Stop selling guns....!!!!
jason xx
jason xx May 28, 2022 9:08AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
The only way to "reduce" this is making guns illegal and getting the ones out there out of circulation. You are looking at 20 years to make a dent. This shooter bought his legally anyway.
Brent Dewbre
Brent Dewbre May 28, 2022 9:08AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Stop eating sugar!
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email