Parents who lost their children are asking why it took so long for the Ulvade police department to confront the eighteen year old gunman who barricaded himself in a classroom, before shooting 19 children and 02 teachers.
According to multiple media reports, the authorities waited for at least an hour after the gunman entered the school building before finally responding with force.
Also, according to initial reports, officials had given conflicting information regarding the timeline of the shooting. At the initial press conference after the shooting occured, Texas Department of Public Safety director, Steve McGraw told the press that a school police officer had “engaged” with the gunman, but no gunfire had been exchanged. Later, according to other DPS officials, the so called officer had exchanged gunfire with the gunman.
Was there a “school district officer,” or not? The New York Times reported that there was a school district police officer nearby, in a car, who responded to shots of gunfire and arrived as the shooter was entering the building.
Another DPS official, Victor Escalon, said at a Thursday press conference that, “The shooter was not confronted by anybody.”
Parents are criticizing the Uvalde police department and the Department of Public Safety, who are leading the investigation, as to why it took the authorities so long to respond and why officials had given conflicting information about the situation.
“The bottom line is that law enforcement was there, they did engage immediately, they did contain him in the classroom,” McGraw said during the Wednesday press conference.
Videos of frustrated parents have also made the rounds on social media, confronting police officers after the gunman had gotten into the school, urging them to stop being cowards and enter the building. Which they failed to do for at least an hour, and as a result, 19 children and 02 teachers lost their lives.
Sources: Texas Tribune, Associated Press, The Week, New York Times.