Shooting at a school in Texas: a police officer armed with a rifle “passed the chance to shoot the shooter in Uvalde” | American News

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A rifle-wielding police officer hesitated when given the opportunity to shoot the Uvalde school shooter, it was reported.

The unidentified city officer, who was carrying an AR-15 type weapon, apparently stopped because he was worried about hitting children, a senior sheriff’s deputy told The New York Times.

Another officer from another department — Uvalde School District Police — arrived early but walked past the shooter, not seeing him in the school parking lot, officials said.

Salvador Ramos, 18, killed 21 people, including 19 children, at Robb Elementary School in Texas on May 24. We don’t think he left a manifesto or note explaining his actions.

Police did not confront him for more than an hour, even as anguished parents pressed them into the school.

Chief deputy Ricardo Rios said the chance to shoot Ramos passed “very quickly”, maybe within seconds.

Any attempt to eliminate the moving shooter would have been difficult, he added. Had the officer opened fire and hit a bystander – particularly a child – he could have been the subject of a criminal investigation.

Chief Deputy Rios told the newspaper: “It is my understanding that after speaking to several officers who were there, the shooter engaged two officers from the town of Uvalde when they arrived, outside the building.”

The officers, including the one armed with a rifle, hid behind a patrol car.

Recounting a conversation, Deputy Chief Rios said: “I asked him, ‘Why didn’t you shoot? Why didn’t you get involved? And that’s when he told me about the context.

“According to the officers, they did not return fire because there were children playing in the background and they were afraid to hit the children.

“I’m not bashing him or anything,” Rios added. “I understand.”

Children hold signs and pictures of school victims in Uvalde, Texas during a rally in Discovery Green Park across from the National Rifle Association annual meeting held at the George R Brown Convention Center on Friday, May 27, 2022 in Houston.  (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)
Image:
Children hold signs in front of the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting in Houston last month
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The Uvalde Police Department, whose officer allegedly had the shooter in the crosshairs, did not respond to a request for comment, the New York Times said.

Mr Rios said he shared his information with a special Texas House committee investigating the school massacre.

Rep. Dustin Burrows, who chairs the committee, defended the decision to interview witnesses in private and not reveal his findings so far.

“One person’s truth may be different from another person’s truth,” he said.

A teacher who survived the school shooting said he would never forgive the police for taking over an hour to get into his class after the shooter first opened fire.

Arnulfo Reyes, a third- and fourth-grade teacher who taught in room 111, was shot in the lung and back by Ramos.

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