Texas lieutenant defends Uvalde police awaiting reinforcements, saying ‘they could have been shot’

After the shooting at a school in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday, state law enforcement has been widely criticized as the public learns more about what officers did and didn’t do to end the active shooters’ situation.

While Ministry of Public Safety officials initially said the shooter, Salvador Ramos, was confronted by an armed officer outside the school, the same authorities denied that version of events at a news conference on Thursday. The Wall Street Journal reported the gunman fired shots for 12 minutes after colliding with his truck in front of the school before entering “unopposed”. Police arrived at the scene four minutes later “and fired with Ramos, who locked himself in a fourth grade classroom.”

According to the story, it was around 12:40 p.m. — about an hour later — when a Border Patrol tactical team entered the school and then the classroom and killed the gunman. During that time, parent Angeli Rose Gomez said she was handcuffed by US Marshals outside of school, was later freed, jumped a fence, went to school, grabbed her children and fled. Videos from that time show frustrated and hectic parents call for officials to take action.

“The police didn’t do anything,” Gomez said diary. “They just stood in front of the fence. They didn’t go in or run anywhere.”

Victor Escalon, a DPS officer, said Thursday that officers “called everyone in the area” for help. They then waited for “special equipment” and body armor.

And so on Thursday, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer had some pressing questions for Lt. Texas DPS’ Chris Olivarez.

“Doesn’t current best practice, Lieutenant, require officers to incapacitate a shooter as quickly as possible, regardless of how many officers are actually on the scene?” asked Blitzer.

“Right,” Olivarez replied. “In an active shooter situation, you want to stop the killing, you want to save life. But also, of course, one thing that the American people need to understand is that officers are entering this building. They don’t know where the shooter is. You hear gunshots. They get shots,” Olivarez said.

“If they had proceeded at that point without knowing where the suspect was, they could have been shot, they could have been killed, and at that point this gunman would have had the opportunity to kill other people in this school, He continued. “That’s how they were able to keep this shooter in that classroom so that he couldn’t go to other parts of the school to commit other murders.”

Blitzer also asked Olivarez why authorities initially claimed an armed officer confronted the shooter outside the school.

“So that’s information we got early in this investigation,” he replied.

“This goes back to what I mentioned earlier, trying to corroborate all of this information by getting factual testimony from these witnesses,” he added. “The Texas Rangers are now conducting interviews with these officers who are trying to figure out exactly what their role was, and that will help us create a more factual, concrete timeline.”

https://www.thedailybeast.com/texas-lieutenant-defends-uvalde-police-waiting-for-backup-saying-they-couldve-been-shot?source=articles&via=rss Texas lieutenant defends Uvalde police awaiting reinforcements, saying ‘they could have been shot’


Hung is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Hung joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: hung@interreviewed.com.

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