The teenager had written on Facebook, in private messages, that he was going to attack a school. He had bought two semi-automatic rifles and 375 bullets just after celebrating his 18th birthday. The powerful pro-arms lobby, the NRA, denounces “the act of an isolated and deranged criminal”.
It is 11:30 a.m. in Uvalde, Texas, when a teenager opens fire on Tuesday, May 24, on the students and staff of an elementary school in the city. At least 19 children and two teachers were killed by the young man, identified as Salvador Ramos, just 18 years old.
The teenager had announced via Facebook that he was going to attack an elementary school, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said at a press conference on Wednesday. His speaking engagement was disrupted by Democrat Beto O’Rourke. “You say it was not foreseeable, it was completely foreseeable from the moment you decided not to do anything,” lambasted the Democrat, gubernatorial candidate against Mr. Abbott, accusing the latter of being ” responsible”.
US President Joe Biden has announced that he will be visiting Texas in a few days. The powerful pro-gun lobby, the NRA, cleared itself of all responsibility on Wednesday, denouncing “the act of an isolated and disturbed criminal
”What is the profile of the shooter?
Salvador Ramos is an American citizen enrolled in Uvalde high school where he had dropped out, Greg Abbott said on Wednesday. He had been living with his grandmother for two months, said Steven McCraw, the head of the Texas Department of Public Safety.
He has no criminal history as a minor or any psychological problems known to local health departments, Governor Abbott said, calling him “insane” who has “disabilities that cause him to shoot his grandmother .” mother and then kill babies, all these young children”.
A cousin, Mia, told The Washington Post that he no longer wanted to attend classes where he was bullied because of his stutter.
On May 17, the day after his 18th birthday, he had purchased a semi-automatic rifle, then ammunition, then another automatic rifle on May 20 at the same Uvalde armory, McCraw said. Investigators have so far found no evidence to explain his actions.
An act announced via Facebook
Greg Abbott claimed the teenager announced the school attack via Facebook. A spokesperson for Meta, the company that owns Facebook, quickly clarified that these messages had been sent privately to another user: “We are cooperating closely with law enforcement in their ongoing investigation. »
According to statements by Greg Abbott, the young man wrote three messages on the social network to announce that he intended to carry out shooting against an elementary school. He then wrote that he was going to shoot his grandmother, then confirmed that he had indeed fired at the latter, added Greg Abbott. Hit in the face, the 66-year-old woman survived and called the police. She was transported in critical condition to University Health Hospital in San Antonio. “The third message, probably less than fifteen minutes before arriving at the school, said: ‘I am going to open fire on an elementary school,’” Mr. Abbott said. These messages are the only warnings issued before the shooting, the governor continued.
According to CNN, these last messages were not intended for a public audience, but rather for a German woman he met online earlier this month. He announced just before his act that he had “shot [his] grandmother in the head” and was going to “shoot an elementary school now” . The 15-year-old, who lives in Frankfurt, said he was angry with his grandmother that morning because she was “on the phone with [telephone company] AT&T” about his phone. According to her, the young man spent a lot of time alone at home and “never had plans to go out with his friends” .
What we know about the course of events
After shooting his grandmother, the young man fled with his pick-up. After 3.5 kilometers on the road, he was the victim of an accident for an undetermined reason near the Robb primary school, where more than 500 children aged between 7 and 11 are educated. They only had a few more school days before the end of the school year.
He exits the vehicle with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and a backpack. He is quickly confronted by a police officer assigned to the security of the primary school who cannot prevent him from entering the establishment through an access door, said Steven McCraw.
When he enters the building, he enters a corridor that leads to two adjoining classrooms, followed by three policemen who ask for reinforcement. It is 11:30 a.m. on the spot (6:30 p.m. Paris time) when he barricades himself in one of them and “the carnage begins,” according to the head of the Texas Department of Public Security.
It took several tens of minutes before the shooter was killed by an elite Border Police unit.
Joe Biden will go to Uvalde
US President Joe Biden announced on Wednesday that he would be traveling with his wife to Texas in the coming days to “bring some comfort to a shocked, grieving, and traumatized community”.
Joe Biden traveled to Buffalo, New York, just over a week ago to meet with families of victims of a supermarket shooting by a white supremacist. “I’m sick and tired of this,” he said, urging the Senate to quickly approve the appointment of Steven Dettelbach to head the federal agency in charge of gun control laws. The American president also renewed his criticism of the pro-firearms lobby in the United States, which is striving to stop any attempt to strengthen legislation in the sector.