An armed policeman during the Uvalde school massacre had the opportunity to shoot the gunman but missed his chance while waiting for clearance from a supervisor, according to a new report.
Two teachers and 19 children death after the police waited for over an hour storming Robb Elementary School when Salvador Rolando Ramos opened fire on May 24.
Some of the 21 victims “could have been saved” if they had received medical attention sooner, a Texas State University study found on Wednesday.
The report, considering the police response to the tragedy, highlighted a series of mistakes made before 18-year-old Ramos walked through the door of an open school with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle at 11:33 a.m. .
An officer from the Uvalde Police Department (UPD) reported that he was at the scene where Ramos crashed his truck before exiting the vehicle with the weapon.
“The UPD officer was armed with a rifle and aimed to shoot the attacker; however, he asked his superior for permission to shoot.
“The UPD officer did not hear a response and turned around for confirmation from his supervisor,” the report continued.
The review, conducted by the university’s Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERT) program, said: ‘A reasonable officer would have considered this to be an active situation and devised a plan to deal with the suspicious.”
The 26-page report was based on school video footage, police body cameras, testimony from officers at the scene and statements from investigators.
He also found that the officers were no better equipped to deal with Ramos when they finally entered the building at 12:50 p.m.
“Effective incident command” does not appear to have been established between the various emergency services that responded, the report reveals.
The massacre became the deadliest school shooting in the United States since a gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut in 2012.
A teacher who survived the shooting has vowed never to forgive police for delays in entering his classroom, where 11 children were killed.
Chilling warnings before Salvador Ramos shoots 21 people
Police instructor says officers showed shortcomings in leadership and mindset
Arnulfo Reyes called the officers “cowards” for not saving the students.
“After all, I’m getting angrier and angrier because you have a bulletproof vest. I had nothing. I had nothing. You’re supposed to protect and serve, there’s no excuse for their shares,” Mr. Reyes said.
More than 700 people have been shot in 43 of the 50 US states two weeks after the school shooting, according to data released in June.