Delay in violating classroom during Texas school shooting was ‘wrong decision,’ official says

The on-site commander’s decision to break through the classroom of a Texas Elementary School during the mass shooting this week was the “wrong decision,” authorities said Friday. Nearly 20 officers stood in a corridor outside the classrooms during the attack on Robb Elementary School more than 45 minutes before officers used a master key to open a door and confront the gunman, Texas Department of Public Safety director Steven McCraw said at a news conference.

The site commander believed 18-year-old Salvador Ramos had been barricaded in a classroom in Uvalde during Tuesday’s attack and the children were not at risk, McCraw said.

“He was convinced at the time that there was no longer a threat to the children and that the subject was barricaded and they had time to get organized” to get into the classroom, McCraw said.

“Of course it was not the right decision. It was the wrong decision,” he said.

McCraw said U.S. Border Patrol agents eventually used a master key to open the locked classroom door where they confronted and killed the gunman, who killed 19 students and two teachers.

McCraw said there was a barrage of gunfire shortly after the gunman entered the classroom where they killed him, but those shots were “sporadic” for most of the 48 minutes as officers waited outside the hallway. He said researchers don’t know if or how many children died in those 48 minutes.

During the attack, teachers and children repeatedly called 911 for help, including one girl begging, “Send the police now,” McCraw said.

This is a story in development and will be updated.

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