Update on Uvalde, Texas shooting

June 21, 2022
A photo of a classroom.

There’s compelling evidence that the law enforcement response to the attack at Robb Elementary was an abject failure …

Director of the Texas Department of Public Safety Steve McCraw during a state Senate hearing on the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, which occurred nearly one month ago.

On May 24, 2022, the deadliest school shooting in Texas history took place in the town of Uvalde (about a 90-minute drive from San Antonio). 19 children and two teachers were murdered at Robb Elementary School by an 18-year-old gunman. On Tuesday, the Texas Senate held a hearing on this shooting; new information surfaced, including:

  • McCraw testified there were a "sufficient" number of armed officers on the scene to stop the shooting just three minutes after the gunman entered the school.
  • Previously, it was thought that the classroom door to get into the classroom — where the shooter was located for over an hour — was locked.
  • McCraw testified that the classroom doors could not be locked from the inside; therefore, it could not have been locked by the shooter: "I have great reasons to believe it was never secured," he said.
  • Furthermore, McCraw testified that the radios which officers use did not work inside the school, with the exception of the border patrol agents' radios (which he also stated did not work well), and that some of the maps used by authorities to plan their response during the incident were incorrect.

McCraw testified: "Obviously, not enough training was done in this situation, plain and simple," and mentioned the "Doctrine" for dealing with active shooting situations: 1) Stop the killing; 2) Stop the dying. "I don't care if you have flip-flops and Bermuda shorts, you go in," he said.

When asked why DPS did not take charge, McCraw said the troopers did not have the legal authority to do so.

McCraw also testified that Uvalde Police Chief Pete Arredondo — who, DPS says, was the command officer on site — made "terrible decisions" at the scene. Arredondo, who was recently interviewed by The Texas Tribune, has stated that he did not believe himself to be the person in charge during the incident.

Big Picture: This investigation by the Texas Dept. of Public Safety — which has included around 700 interviews *so far* — is one of many into this incident. The details on the shooting provided in testimony highlight mistakes that were made and also spark more questions.

Note: McCraw said the timeline of the incident was most recently updated on June 20. This reflects the ongoing and developing nature of this investigation as interviews and analyses continue.

Texas top cop: Uvalde police could've ended rampage early on (Associated Press)

“If there’s kids in there, we need to go in”: Officers in Uvalde were ready with guns, shields and tools — but not clear orders (The Texas Tribune)

A top Texas official shared new details on how police responded to the Uvalde massacre. This is the latest minute-by-minute timeline (CNN)

Click HERE to watch Tuesday's hearing in full.

Click HERE for a livestream of the hearing continuing today, which is focusing on firearm safety and mental health.

by Jenna Lee,