A Uvalde school teacher has said gunman Salvador Ramos ‘scared her’ and began ‘dressing like school shooter’ in the months leading up to the massacre.
During a Texas State Senate hearing investigating the response to the shooting, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, Col. Steve McCraw, said that after the shooting at least six individuals told him Ramos had worried them.
McCraw said that those worries had only been voiced to him after the shooting, and that no reports about Ramos had been made prior.
He also pointed out that Ramos’ disturbing behavior was well known in the small town of 17,000, referencing footage of the shooter holding a bag of dead cats that was posted online.
McCraw also speculated that the draw of instant notoriety enabled by the internet and social media may have played a factor in Ramos’ decision to carry out the shooting.
Meanwhile, Uvalde mayor Don McLaughlin announced on Wednesday night that the Robb Elementary School where the shooting took place will be demolished.
Salvador Ramos, 18. A Uvalde teacher told Texas Department of Public Safety director Col. Steve McCraw that Ramos had begun ‘dressing like school shooter’ before the massacre
Texas Department of Public Safety director Col. Steve McCraw speaking at the Texas State Senate hearing investigating the response to the shooting on Tuesday
Uvalde mayor Don McLaughlin announced on Wednesday night that the Robb Elementary School where the shooting took place will be demolished
McCraw said that he had interviewed between 500 and 700 people as a part of the ongoing investigation into the May 24 shooting that left 19 children and two teachers dead.
McCraw told the Texas Senate hearing that a teacher told him that Ramos, 18, ‘was the student who scared her the most,’ and that he had started ‘dressing like a mass shooter’ before the attack.
‘Out of all these interviews, how many times did they tell you he was the one they were worried about?’ Texas senator Paul Bettencourt asked McCraw.
‘Several times. We had one teacher who said she was always worried about him,’ McCraw answered, ‘He was the one student who scared her most. We discussed, as I mentioned earlier, last year he started dressing like a school shooter, started acting like a school shooter.’
Bettencourt characterized incident of Ramos holding a bag of dead cats as ‘animal abuse’ and ‘abhorrent behavior.’ That nobody had reported Ramos behavior or their fears about him, Bettencourt said ‘That’s a major failure.’
The release of an image from inside the school showing Arredondo’s armed men doing nothing as the massacre unfolded – renewing concerns as to why cops didn’t storm the room sooner
McCraw said that he has interviewed between 500 and 700 people while investigating the shooting
McCraw noted that despite multiple people telling him they’d been concerned about Ramos, no reports were made about him before the shooting
Senator Charles Perry pressed McCraw about his thought’s on Ramos’ desire for notoriety, and whether access to audiences through social media may have spurned him to action.
‘You mentioned a couple of times notoriety — let me ask it this way regarding social media. It plays into human nature, men specifically, about wanting to leave their mark, wanting to be significant, wanting that purpose, wanting to be something. And that can be good or bad,’ Perry said.
‘Do you think the social media aspect of the platform – and it’s just been relevant up in the last 30 years, right? I’m 60 – we had these individuals who weren’t treated right or felt like they were mistreated or had issues, but they didn’t have a platform.’
‘Do you think that the idea that this guy knew the minute he pulled the trigger that he just got notoriety on a worldwide basis that will live unfortunately into perpetuity?’
‘Absolutely,’ McCraw said.
‘You think that plays into the psyche?’ asked Perry.
‘Some of the statements he made would suggest exactly that,’ McCraw said.
Students fleeing the Robb Elementary School during the mass shooting while Ramos was still at large inside on May 24
During the hearing, McCraw become the latest to lay blame on the botched response on district police chief Pete Arredondo (above)
McCraw also slammed police’s response to the massacre as ‘an abject failure,’ and said that there had been enough cops at the scene to stop the gunman just three minutes into the shooting.
‘Three minutes after the subject entered the west hallway, there was sufficient number of armed officers wearing body armor, to isolate distract and neutralize the subject,’ McCraw told the committee while reviewing the timeline of the day’s tragic events.
The assertion saw McCraw become the latest to lay blame on the botched response on district police chief Pete Arredondo, who reportedly commanded cops on the scene to stay put and not confront gunman Salvadaor Ramos after the teen barricaded himself inside a filled fourth-grade classroom at Robb Elementary.
McCraw reported that he spoke with numerous people who were aware of footage of Ramos holding a bag of dead cats that was posted online
In a scathing speech, McCraw said the district chief ‘decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children.’
‘The only thing stopping a hallway of dedicated officers from entering room 111 and 112 was the on-scene commander, who decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children,’ McCraw said. ‘The officers had weapons – the children had none. The officers had body armor – the children had none.’
‘The law enforcement response to the attack at Robb Elementary was an abject failure and antithetical to everything we’ve learned over the last two decades since the Columbine Massacre,’ McCraw declared.
In another bombshell revelation, McCraw revealed that the door to the classroom that Ramos had been hiding behind had not been locked – contradicting earlier assertions from Arredondo’s department that the chief had been frantically trying to track down keys for more than an hour, to open the fourth-grade classroom’s door.