Mayorkas praises Border Patrol for response to Uvalde shooting, says heroism ‘saved lives’

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Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Wednesday praised Border Patrol agents who responded to the deadly shooting in Uvalde, Texas, saying their heroism was “saving lives.”

“We are grateful to the brave members of our Border Patrol, many of whom are from Uvalde and surrounding communities, who immediately responded to the scene with local and state law enforcement,” Mayorkas said in a statement.

CLICK HERE FOR LIVE UPDATES ON SHOOTING AT THE UVALDE, TEXAS SCHOOL

Mayorkas was responding to the shooting at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, where a gunman shot and killed 19 students and two teachers. The alleged shooter Salvador Ramos, a resident of Uvalde, acted alone, according to the authorities.

An officer from the Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC), a specialized unit within the Border Patrol, allegedly shot and killed the shooter.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas traveled to the southern border of the United States, Tuesday, May 17, 2022.
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Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas traveled to the southern border of the United States, Tuesday, May 17, 2022.
(Pool video)

The officer entered the school with a team while other law enforcement officers engaged with the barricaded suspect, Border Patrol sources told Fox News. The officer was hit in the leg by a bullet or shrapnel.

Mayorkas confirmed the injury, while praising the Border Patrol agents involved.

BIDEN DEMANDS GUN CONTROL FOLLOWING SHOOTING AT UVALDE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL IN TEXAS

“Without hesitation, they placed themselves between the shooter and the students to end the bloodshed and administer medical aid. Without a doubt, their heroism yesterday saved lives,” he said. declared. “A Border Patrol agent was injured in the crossfire yesterday and we know the loss and trauma of this tragedy will continue to affect many other CBP families for a long time to come.”

BORTAC provides immediate response to high-risk incidents requiring special skills and tactics, according to Border Patrol. The team has full-time members based in El Paso, Texas, and full-time members across the United States.

Mayorkas also sent his condolences to the families of those killed in the attack.

“No words can come close to comforting the families of those who disappeared in Uvalde yesterday,” he said. “We at the Department of Homeland Security are horrified by this callous act of violence.”

“We mourn the families and loved ones of the children and teachers lost, as well as the residents of the community of Uvalde. We hope for the full and speedy recovery of those who were injured,” he said.

Former Acting Director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Thomas Homan also praised the Border Patrol – which he said had a tough year under the Biden administration.

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“These men and women are America’s heroes,” he said.

“These men and women are working overtime, 24/7, the biggest crisis ever. But when they were needed, they didn’t hesitate to go to this school and to face the gunshots.”

Fox News’ Joshua Nelson and Bill Melugin contributed to this report.

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