Three very serious and tragic errors helped the killer commit 21 murders. A police chief used poor judgment, 911 calls went unanswered, and a teacher left a door open.
THE FIRST TRAGIC ERROR
Chief Peter Arredondo is responsible for delaying police entry into the school for 30 to 40 minutes as he waited for tactical gear to arrive. He was the commander on the scene. That is the opposite of what training advises. Chief Arredondo thought the children and teachers were safe and it was a negotiation situation.
He had recently held training on a school shooting scenario. Chief Arredondo had been a 911 dispatcher, then became the head of a small contingent of school safety officers before becoming chief of the small police department. The Chief just made it to the city council recently after 16 years in Uvalde’s police department.
Steven McCraw, head of the Texas Department of Public Safety said yesterday that Arredondo’s actions were wrong. “Clearly there were kids in the room, and clearly they were at risk,” he said, adding that children may have been injured and needed life-saving measures as well.
One chief of a small police department with poor judgment held up about 80 officers from various departments.
THOSE WHO ANSWERED THE CALL
Approximately 80 federal agents had responded to the shooting on Tuesday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. The commander told them to not go after the attacker.
“After approximately 30 minutes passed, however, the federal agents – Border Patrol’s elite unit decided to ignore the commander and lead officers inside the school to take down the shooter. That is according to NBC News.
The report added that agents from ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) had also responded to the shooting and were on the scene.
THE BREAKING POINT
A source told the network that the breaking point for the federal agents was when they saw that parents were trying to get into the building themselves to pull their children out.
More from @JuliaEAinsley:
According to the officials, agents from BORTAC, the CBP tactical unit, and ICE’s HSI arrived between 12 and 12:15 p.m. Local law enforcement asked them to wait, and instructed HSI agents to help pull children out of the windows. https://t.co/AfczQkvdyr
— Matt Marshall (@_Matt_Marshall) May 27, 2022
THE CBP OFFICER WHO TOOK DOWN THE KILLER ANSWERED A TEXT
A teacher texted her husband. a Mr. Albarado, who was getting his haircut. “There’s an active shooter,” she said. “Help. I love you.”
The New York Times reported that Albarado’s barber gave him a shotgun and that Albarado then ran out of the barbershop and sped to the school.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier in the week that approximately 80 Border Patrol agents responded to the shooting out of the roughly 150 Border Patrol agents that were stationed in the town.
“Initially, the Bortac agents couldn’t get into the classroom because of a steel door and cinder block construction,” the report said. “Meanwhile, the gunman … shot at them through the door and walls.”
“The Bortac agents got a master key from the school principal that allowed them to enter the room,” the report added. “One Bortac agent’s shield was hit by rounds upon entering and a second agent was wounded by shrapnel. A third killed the suspect.”
Why didn’t the Principal get the key to the Police?
Three of the CBP officers broke into the classroom, two were injured, and the third, Officer Albarado blew him away. It was too late for 19 young children and two beloved elementary school teachers.
SECOND TRAGIC ERROR OF UNANSWERED CALLS
Children and teachers were calling 911 begging for help. McCraw said
At 12:16 p.m., a 911 caller revealed that eight-nine students were still alive. Yet police did not breach the classroom to kill active shooter Salvador Ramos until 12:50 p.m., even though 19 officers were inside the school.
“According to McCraw, “a barrage, hundreds of rounds were pumped in in four minutes” by Ramos into two classrooms right at the beginning, so it was believed there were no more people alive inside the classroom. Any gunfire after that was “sporadic.” Both classroom doors were locked on the inside, he said. Some of the 911 callers survived, he said, but he was not specific.”
The police said the 911 calls were not communicated by the dispatcher.
They also didn’t have the keys to the classroom and during the 40-minute delay, they still didn’t have the keys.
THE 911 CALL TIMELINE
11:30 a.m. A 911 call came in that there was a crash and a man with a gun.
A teacher said that a minute (she was probably off in the time) after the door was left ajar, the killer started shooting.
12:03 p.m. A 911 caller in room 112 spoke to a dispatcher for 1 minute and 23 seconds. She identified herself, but McCraw did not release her name. The caller whispered that she was in room 112.
12:10 p.m. The woman called back, and advised that multiple people were dead.
12:13 p.m. There was another 911 call.
12:16 p.m. She called back and said 8-9 students were alive.
12:19 p.m. Another person, this one in room 111, called 911. The person hung up when a student told her to hang up.
Shots rang out and it was not a barricade situation
12:21 p.m. Dispatchers could hear over the 911 call that three shots were fired.
12:36 p.m. A 911 call came in that lasted 21 seconds. The initial caller, a student child, called back. The child was told to stay on the line but be very quiet, and she said, ‘He shot the door.’
12:43 p.m. and 12:47 p.m. The child called 911 and asked dispatchers to ‘please send the police now.’
12:46 p.m. The caller said she could hear the police next door.
12:50 p.m. Shots fired could be heard.
12:51 p.m. There were very loud sounds like officers were moving children out of the room.
Two children called 911 and did not die, according to McCraw.
THE POLICE RESPONSE TIMELINE
11:27 a.m. Authorities know from the video that the exterior door, which the shooter later entered to get inside the school, was “propped open by a teacher.” The door was supposed to be locked and wasn’t supposed to be open.
11:28 a.m. The suspect vehicle crashed into a ditch. The teacher ran to room 132 to retrieve a phone. The same teacher walked back to the exit door, which remained open.
Around this time, two males at a nearby funeral home heard the crash and went to the crash scene. When they arrived at the crash scene, they saw a man with a gun exit the passenger side of the car with a backpack. They immediately began running.
Ramos began shooting at them but did not hit them. One of the males fell when he was running. Both males returned to the funeral home. The video showed a teacher re-emerged from inside the school, panicked, and called 911.
THIRD TRAGIC ERROR.
THE TEACHER WHO LEFT THE DOOR OPEN
THE SCHOOL WAS UNDER LOCKDOWN DUE TO GUNSHOTS FIRED
The killer got into the school between 11:33 and 11:40 after a teacher left the side door ajar at 11:27.
11:30 a.m. A 911 call came in that there was a crash and a man with a gun.
11:31 a.m. The suspect reached the last row of vehicles in the school parking lot. He began shooting at the school while patrol vehicles got to the nearby funeral home.
It was discussed early on that an officer was a resource officer who had confronted the suspect. That did not happen, McCraw has now confirmed. He said that information came from preliminary interviews but sometimes witnesses under stress get information wrong.
McCraw said the school resource officer was not on the scene or on campus. He heard the 911 call and drove immediately to the area and sped to what he thought was the man with a gun at the back of the school, but that turned out to be a teacher, not the suspect. In doing so, he drove right by the suspect, according to McCraw. The suspect at that point was “hunkered down” behind a vehicle and he began shooting at the school.
11:31 a.m. The suspect was shooting in between the vehicle. The patrol vehicle arrived at the funeral home. Multiple shots were fired outside the school. The patrol car accelerated and drove by the shooter and left the camera view.
11:32 a.m. Multiple shots were fired at the school.
11:33 a.m. The suspect entered the school at the door.
11:33 a.m. The suspect began shooting into room 111 or 112. It was not possible to determine from the video angle which classroom he first fired into. He shot at least 100 rounds at that time, based on the audio evidence.
11:35 a.m. Three police officers with the Uvalde Police Department entered the same door as the suspect entered. They were later followed by another four-person team of Uvalde police officers and a deputy sheriff. Thus, there were at that point seven officers on the scene. The three initial police officers arrived and went to the door, but the door was closed. They received grazing wounds from the suspect.
More Gunfire Even After Police Arrived
11:37 a.m. There was more gunfire. Another 16 rounds were fired at 11:37, 11:38 and 11:40 and 11:44.
11:51 a.m. A police sergeant and a law enforcement agent started to arrive.
12:03 p.m. Officers continued to arrive in the hallway, There were as many as 19 officers in that hallway.
12:15 p.m. Tactical team members arrived along with shields.
12:21 p.m. The suspect fired again. Law enforcement moved down the hallway.
12:50 a.m. Law enforcement officers breached the door using keys that they were able to get from the janitor. Both doors were locked when officers arrived. They killed the suspect at that time.
Authorities recovered 60 total magazines, 11 inside the school and three on the suspect’s body. Two were in room 112 and six were inside room 111. They also found 32 magazines outside the school, including 31 in a backpack that he did not take into the classrooms with him. He had 1,057 rounds of ammunition. Authorities located 315 rounds in the school, including 142 spent cartridges. They found 35 spent law enforcement cartridges, including eight in the hallway and 27 in the classroom 111, where the suspect was killed.
As details of the unbearably horrific murders in Uvalde, we will report them although they do keep changing as people involved are interviewed and police clarify what went on.
Correction: In response to a new timeline, we don’t believe the school was in lockdown when a staff member left the door ajar.