19 School Children, 2 Adults Killed in Mass Shooting in Texas
UVALDE, Texas — Twenty-one people were killed, including 19 children, during a mass shooting at an elementary school in Texas Tuesday afternoon, authorities said.
“He shot and killed, horrifically, incomprehensibly, 14 students and killed a teacher,” Gov. Greg Abbott said shortly after the events unfolded.
Abbott also said the suspected shooter, an 18-year-old male, died at the scene and was believed to have been killed by responding officers.
The attack occurred shortly after 1 p.m. at the Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, about 85 miles west of San Antonio.
According to the governor, the unidentified assailant was armed with a handgun and possibly a rifle.
Pete Arredondo, the chief of police for the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District, said the elementary school’s students range from the second through the fourth grades.
“At this point the investigation is leading to tell us that the suspect did act alone during this heinous crime,” Arredondo said.
On Tuesday afternoon, Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District began alerting the surrounding community that an active shooter was reported at the school, which has an enrollment of just under 600 students.
A notice on the district’s website read, “Robb Elementary Parents, please do not pick up students at this time. Students need to be accounted for before they are released to your care.”
The website also noted that Robb Elementary students were being transported to a nearby civic center for reunification with their families.
“The Civic Center will be under a Secure Status until all students are accounted for. Parents please do not pick up students at this time. You will be notified to pick up students once all are accounted for,” the notice said.
The victims of the shooting were taken by ambulance to Uvalde Memorial Hospital.
According to the Associated Press, a heavy police presence surrounded the school Tuesday afternoon, with officers in heavy vests diverting traffic and FBI agents coming and going from the building.
The shooting in Texas came less than two weeks after a gunman opened fire at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, killing 10 Black shoppers and workers in what officials have described as a hate crime.
Uvalde is home to about 16,000 people and is the seat of government for Uvalde County, the AP said. The town is about 75 miles from the border with Mexico. Robb Elementary is in a mostly residential neighborhood of modest homes.
In a statement released early Tuesday evening, Gov. Abbott said, “Texans across the state are grieving for the victims of this senseless crime and for the community of Uvalde.
“Cecilia and I mourn this horrific loss and we urge all Texans to come together to show our unwavering support to all who are suffering,” he continued. “We thank the courageous first responders who worked to finally secure Robb Elementary School. I have instructed the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Rangers to work with local law enforcement to fully investigate this crime.
“The Texas Division of Emergency Management is charged with providing local officials all resources necessary to respond to this tragedy as the state of Texas works to ensure the community has what it needs to heal,” he added.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said President Joe Biden has been briefed on the school shooting on Air Force One as he returns from a five-day trip to Asia and would continue to receive updates. Biden delivered remarks Tuesday evening at the White House.
This post has been updated to reflect additional deaths reported.
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