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January 26, 2023
Two Uvalde city police officers passed up on a short window of opportunity to shoot a gunman outside Robb Elementary School before he went on to kill 21 people inside the school, a senior sheriff’s deputy told The New York Times.
That would mean a second missed opportunity for officers to stop Salvador Ramos before the 24 May attack inside the school that killed 19 children and two teachers. Officials said that a school district police drove past Ramos without seeing him in the school parking lot.
The unidentified officers, one of whom was armed with an AR-15-style rifle, said they feared hitting children playing in the line of fire outside the school, Chief Deputy Ricardo Rios of nearby Zavalla County told the newspaper.
Rios said he had shared the information with a special Test House committee investigating the school massacre.
Uvalde police officials agreed Friday to speak to the committee investigating, according to a Republican lawmaker leading the probe who had begun to publicly question why the officers were not cooperating sooner.
“Took a little bit longer than we initially had expected,” state Rep. Dustin Burrows said.
On Thursday, Burrows signaled impatience with Uvalde police, tweeting that most people had fully cooperated with their investigation “to help determine the facts” and that he didn’t understand why the city’s police force “would not want the same.” He did not say which members of the department will meet with the committee, which is set to continue questioning witnesses in Uvalde on Monday about the attack that killed 19 students and two teachers.
The state house committee has interviewed more than a dozen witnesses behind closed doors so far, including state police, school staff and school district police. The list of witnesses provided by the committee so far has not included Pete Arrendondo, the Uvalde school district police chief, who has faced criticism over his actions during the attack.
Burrows defended the committee interviewing witnesses in private and not revealing their findings so far, saying its members want an accurate account before issuing a report. “One person’s truth may be different than another person’s truth,” Burrows said Friday.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: KTVU.COM