For this research, we will particularly look at the Robb Elementary School shootings that claimed 22 lives, including that of the gunman. Before the fatal events at the elementary school, the gunman celebrated his 18th birthday and bought at least two assault rifles as his present shortly after. Later on, he had sent a personalized message to someone on Facebook, telling them he was planning to shoot his granny. He did attack his grandma and shot her in the face, according to police. Since the incident transpired a few days back, she is currently recovering in the hospital. After shooting her, he went back to Facebook to validate what he had done. He then said in the conversation that he was going to launch an attack on an elementary school next, but he did not outright specify Robb Elementary School.
He fled in his grandmother’s automobile, which he eventually crashed into a ditch near the elementary school. A teacher dashes into a classroom to get a phone before returning to the open door. Two men from a local funeral house arrive at the accident scene, but when they spot the gunman with a firearm, they begin sprinting toward the funeral home. The shooter fires at them but misses them. When the gunman reaches the last row of cars in the school’s parking lot, he starts firing (Burdick et al., 2020). The first police response head to the funeral home. A school resource officer drives past the gunman, “hunkered down” behind a vehicle as he responds to the school from off-campus.
Upon the gunman making his way into the school through the backdoor on the West side of the campus, multiple shots were fired inside the school doors. He claimed the lives of nineteen fourth-grade students in the classroom where he had barricaded two other adults. Seventeen persons escaped with injuries and are gracefully recovering. The law enforcement released a statement detailing that there was no evidence that the gunman had any previous mental health issues, which led to the unexpected bloodshed and murdering innocent school students. The school is located in Uvalde, Texas, with around 16,000 residents (Statistics, 2021). The tragic event took many by surprise as the community was termed a locale in which interrelations are strong.
The late gunman, Salvador Ramos, was an 18-year-old man who had attended Uvalde High School as he hailed from the small community. He was eventually gunned down by one of the Border Patrol agents who were part of a tactical unit that responded to the scene inside the campus.
A few moments after the teacher called 911 to report the crash and the gunman, police responded swiftly to the neighboring funeral home. With increasing rounds fired inside the school premise, three Uvalde police officers entered the campus through the same doors as the gunman. Two of them suffered grazing wounds, which prompted more police officers to the scene. Many additional nineteen officers found their way into the school’s hallway with the continued gunshots. With directives from survivors who had been calling 911 while hiding, the officers eventually strategized on how they would corner the murderous young man (Kunst & Obaidi, 2020). Members of a Border Patrol Tactical Unit, or BORTAC, led the operation immediately upon arriving a few minutes after the other law enforcers.
Still unclear on the exact time the tactical unit took to bring down the gunman, but they worked coordinately to achieve their aim before more harm was caused. The group breached a locked door to the classrooms using keys from a janitor, and since the gunman had not anticipated that, he was shot on sight, which put an end to the gravy scene that has still scared most of Uvalde’s residents. With the threat no more, the police officers helped lead out the traumatized children from all the classrooms on the campus where they had hidden.
The police did work hand in hand with the local hospital, Uvalde Memorial Hospital, which had established an emergency command center upon getting word about the attack. The enormous response that followed called even for additional direly needed staff. The hospital treated 15 people, 11 of whom were kids, and two children were pronounced dead upon arrival. The hospital went to the extent of putting out a call for blood donors to respond to the tragedy, and the public was highly responsive.
The students were only two days away from their summer break before the incident. With the tragedy, everything was halted, including graduation from the local high school where the gunman allegedly dropped out from. The district’s school year was also done following the shooting, and every other event was canceled. For the affected students and their families, grief counseling was provided at the local civic center. By order of President Biden, flags were to be raised at half-mast at the White House and all other government buildings following the tragedy. Other political leaders too called for reforms to act on gun control. The global community stood alongside the people of Uvalde condemning such fatal acts and called upon effective reforms.
Burdick-Will, J., Nerenberg, K. M., Grigg, J. A., & Connolly, F. (2020). Student mobility and violent crime exposure at Baltimore City Public Elementary Schools. American Educational Research Journal, 58(3), 602–634.
Kunst, J. R., & Obaidi, M. (2020). Understanding violent extremism in the 21st Century: The (re)emerging role of relative deprivation. Current Opinion in Psychology, 35, 55–59.
Statistics, U. S. (2021). National crime victimization survey: School crime supplement. CrimRxiv.