Texas authorities held a special Senate hearing on the mass shooting at Uvalde Elementary School, recognizing how the 18-year-old gunman’s previous “disgusting behavior” and animal cruelty in a small town of just 17,000 people, despite common sense, was never reported to law enforcement. .
During his testimony, Col. Steve McCrae, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, also admitted that social media – and the immediate lure of worldwide notoriety – could lead 18-year-old Salvador Ramos to commit mass violence. Rob Elementary School on May 24th.
With 19 children and two teachers killed in the shooting, McCroy told the Texas Senate “Special Committee to Protect All Texans” that they have interviewed between 500 and 700 people so far as part of an ongoing investigation. He said a teacher told him Ramos was “her most intimidating student” and that the suspect had started “dressing like a mass shooter” a few months earlier.
Texas authorities: Uwalde classroom door opened during shooting as officers await key: ‘Engineer failure’
“Out of all these interviews, how many times did they tell you that he was worried about them?” Texas State Sen. Paul Bettencourt, a Republican, asked McCraw.
“Many times. We had a teacher who said she was always worried about him,” Macro said. “She was the student who scared her the most. We discussed, as I said before, last year she started dressing like a school shooter, behaving like a school shooter.”
McCraw reported how revelations about Ramos’ behavior came from at least half a dozen people after the shooting, and that law enforcement had never been notified before.
He also said that through interviews, several residents saw Ramos carrying a bag of dead cats. Although Bettencourt described it as “animal abuse” and “disgusting behavior,” there was no known record from the school district or law enforcement before the shooting.
“It’s a big failure,” Bettencourt said.
McCraw said Ramos, who has no previous criminal record, was unemployed at the time of the shooting but had previously worked in the fast-food industry.
Ramos was shot dead by a Border Patrol squad at the scene.
In a separate line of questions, one MP pointed out the dangers of social media.
“You’ve mentioned slander many times – let me ask you about it on social media. It’s human nature, especially men, to want to make an impression, to be important, to have that purpose, to be something. And it can be good or bad. State Sen. Charles Perry, a Republican, told McCraw.
“Do you think the social media aspect of the platform – and it’s relevant in the last 30 years, right?” He continued. “I’m 60 years old – we had people who weren’t treated fairly or they thought they’d been abused or they had problems, but they didn’t have a platform.”
Perry went on to say, “Do you think that the moment this man realized he had pulled the trigger, he had gained a worldwide notoriety that would unfortunately last forever?”
“Exactly,” Macro interrupted.
“Do you think it plays into the mind?” Perry asked.
“Some of the statements he made would suggest exactly that,” Macron concluded.
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Throughout Tuesday’s hearing, McCraw showed how to unlock a classroom door, but Uwalde police officers stopped in the hallway and never tried to open it. He also blamed Pete Eredondo, head of the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Police Department, for saving the lives of armed, trained officers rather than children.