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NRA Hosts Houston Event Despite Uvalde Shooting

May 27, 2022 by Reece Nations
NRA Hosts Houston Event Despite Uvalde Shooting
People gather outside the George R. Brown Convention Center to protest the National Rifle Association's annual meeting in Houston, Friday, May 27, 2022. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

HOUSTON — The National Rifle Association commenced its annual meeting in Houston on Friday, just days after the third-deadliest school shooting in United States history took place roughly 280 miles away.

The NRA meeting was met with crowds of protesters who organized right across the street in downtown Houston’s Discovery Green Park to counter its presence. 

Demonstrators held a vigil at city hall on Thursday to mourn the victims and call on the NRA to abandon its plans for this weekend.

In the hours that followed the media scrum where reporters received official updates from law enforcement officials, new information came to light and the record needed correcting. The Well News reported at the time that after the Uvalde school shooting perpetrator crashed his vehicle, he had been confronted by police before he entered Robb Elementary School.

On Thursday, Texas Department of Public Safety Regional Director Victor Escalon told reporters at a press conference that was not the case, and police did not engage the suspect upon his arrival. This information directly contradicted what was stated by DPS Director Steven McGraw during Wednesday’s press conference featuring every one of the state’s top legislative leaders.

Further, Escalon said that the door the shooter had entered was unlocked but couldn’t say why. There were no police officers at the school when the perpetrator arrived.

In fact, in between the shooter’s automobile crash and his approach to the campus, he allegedly shot at two witnesses. The first 911 call concerning the situation came at about 11:30 a.m., Escalon said, and the perpetrator arrived at the school roughly 10 minutes later.

Four minutes later, local law enforcement arrived on the scene, according to the current timeline of events. The shooter then opened fire on them, causing them to retreat and call for reinforcements.

Because the gunman had barricaded himself in a classroom, police waited for specialty equipment to arrive before attempting a breach. Finally, a U.S. Border Patrol tactical team arrived at the school at 12:47 p.m., roughly an hour after the perpetrator’s initial arrival.

Previously, law enforcement told The Well News and others that the shooting was confined to a single classroom in the school. On Thursday, Escalon said that actually four classrooms were targeted in the attack.

After parents began hearing of a lockdown situation at the school, they began to show up at the scene as well. Several had to be restrained by law enforcement from rushing into the school building to save their children before the tactical team appeared.

It was then announced on Thursday that Uvalde law enforcement’s actions and response to the shooting were being investigated by state authorities. 

Reece can be reached at reece@thewellnews.com and @ReeceNations

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