The publication of a preliminary report created by a Texas House Investigative Committee has revealed new information regarding the Robb Elementary School shooting.
On May 24, Salvador Ramos, 18, opened fire inside two fourth-grade classrooms after entering the building through an unlocked back door. A shooter opened fire at the Uvalde, Texas school, killing a total of 21, including two teachers and 19 students.
Since the occurrence, the response to the shooting has drawn heavy scrutiny, leading to the resignation of the city’s mayor. Numerous parents of victims have also expressed how they believe that the officers could have done more.
There was “an overall lackadaisical approach” from law officers at the scene, according to a 77-page report issued on Sunday.
The study stated that “there is no one to whom we can assign malice or ill motives.” “Instead, we discovered egregiously bad decision-making and systemic flaws. We acknowledge that the people of Uvalde are affected the most severely by this catastrophe in ways that we are unable to fathom fully.”
The investigation’s head, Rep. Dustin Burrows (R), who represents Lubbock’s District 83, the committee’s vice-chair, Rep. Joe Moody (D), who represents El Paso’s District 78, and public member Hon. Eva Guzman put together the report.
According to the inquiry, there were a number of unlocked doors at Robb Elementary via which the shooter entered the classrooms. Although there were safety procedures in place, they were not followed.
The committee cited witnesses who claimed that due to a lack of keys, doors were frequently left unsecured and occasionally even propped open. The investigation claimed that persons in charge of administering and overseeing classrooms were not provided keys, particularly in the case of replacement instructors.
The report notes that “no one issued a documented work order for repair.” Arnulfo Reyes, a teacher in Rom 111 who was shot but survived, claimed he informed the school that his door lock was broken. The head custodian at Robb Elementary stated that he had never been made aware of any issues with the doors leading to Rooms 111 or 112. According to the report, he would have issued a work order if he had.
The investigation stated that Robb Elementary had a culture of disobedience with safety standards demanding that doors be kept secure, which proved fatal.
The frequency of security alerts and campus lockdowns brought on by a recent increase in “occurrences of human traffickers trying to outrun the police, usually ending in the smuggler crashing the vehicle and the passengers fleeing in all directions” was another aspect that led to a lack of vigilance on campus.
In the three months prior to the school massacre, which began when the shooter smashed a car in the parking lot and started firing at two people who ran over to help, the study stated that there had been about 50 of them.
According to the document, poor internet access and phone usage may have also contributed to the delay in teachers locking down their classrooms. Over the PA system, the lockdown was never announced.
The study concluded that “more could have probably been done to protect the teachers and their kids if the notice had reached more teachers sooner.” Since the attack at Sandy Hook Elementary School over ten years ago, the massacre is the bloodiest school shooting.
In June, Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw referred to the law enforcement response as an “abject failure” and claimed Pete Arredondo, the police chief of the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District, was principally to blame for the tragedy’s high death toll.
But according to the latest study, when “better trained and better equipped” officials arrived on the site and observed the turmoil, they disregarded their instructions. 376 law enforcement officers responded to the scene, and the majority of them were from federal agencies, the investigation found. Five UCISD officers were present. The remainder were 16 sheriff’s deputies, 25 Uvalde police officers, 91 state police officers, and 149 members of the U.S. Border Patrol.
The investigation discovered that “despite an obviously chaotic environment, the ranking officers of other responding agencies did not approach the Uvalde CISD chief of police or anyone else perceived to be in command to point out the lack of and need for a command post, or to offer that specific assistance.”
To assist the Robb Elementary families who have been affected by the tragedy, the Uvalde school district has formed a formal account with First State Bank of Uvalde. People can donate money via Zelle to firstname.lastname@example.org or send checks through the mail (payable to the “Robb School Memorial Fund“). Call 830-356-2273 to make a donation as well.