The fallout from last week’s mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, which led to the deaths of 19 children and two adults, continued on Tuesday, through the apparent monitoring of surveillance footage leading up to the deadly attack.
At a press conference last week, Texas Department of Safety Director Steve McCraw implied that a teacher had unwittingly left a door at Robb Elementary open for the gunman.
A lawyer representing the unnamed teacher, however, says surveillance footage disproves the DPS leader’s claim of a propped-open door being accessible to the shooting suspect, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos.
Citing the lawyer, the teacher, who had propped the door open to carry food inside, closed the door upon hearing gunshots. The attacker was apparently firing at funeral home employees before entering the school.
The unnamed teacher ”saw the wreck. She ran back inside to get her phone to report the accident. She came back out while on the phone with 911,” said criminal defense attorney Don Flanary, according to the Houston Chronicle.
“The men at the funeral home yelled, ‘He has a gun!’ [The teacher] saw [the assailant] jump the fence, and he had a gun, so she ran back inside.”
The employee isn’t being identified out of safety concerns, according to a Mediaite report.
According to Flanary, the unnamed employee called 911 and slammed the door shut while doing so.
If true, that would effectively refute the Texas DPS’ public claim of the door being propped open, thus allowing access to the gunman.
The unnamed teacher ”kicked the rock away when she went back in. She remembers pulling the door closed while telling 911 that he was shooting. She thought the door would lock because that door is always supposed to be locked,” said Flanary, on behalf of his client.
There’s more to the open-door speculation:
Another source reportedly told the Chronicle that a separate door in the Robb building had a “non-functioning locking mechanism,” suggesting that the door closed by the unnamed teacher could not have been locked — even when fully closed.
Uvalde police have already been under fire for their delayed response time to last week’s shooting.
The second-guessing of the police’s actions include an on-site commander no longer deeming the area an “active shooter situation” once Ramos, the suspected gunman, had barricaded himself in a classroom.
Meanwhile, a number of elementary children students were reportedly calling 911 from inside the school.
At last week’s media session, McCraw admitted that this was the “wrong” call, as it led to a massive delay in response time.
According to the Daily Mail, Ramos used an AR-15-style semi-automatic rifle, which he had bought legally just days before last week’s attack, and shortly after his 18th birthday.
During the shooting, a Border Patrol agent reportedly rushed into the school and found Ramos barricaded, according to a sourced report from The Associated Press.
The agent then fatally shot Ramos and left, according to the AP report.