TEXAS school shooter Salvador Ramos shared three chilling Facebook posts warning of his deadly plot minutes before he slaughtered 21 people at Robb Elementary.
In a follow-up post, he wrote: “I shot my grandmother,” according to Abbott.
Less than 15 minutes later, Ramos posted: “I’m going to shoot an elementary school,” the Texas governor said during Wednesday’s press conference.
Meta Communications Director Andy Stone said the messages that Abbott described were private one-to-one text messages that were discovered after the tragedy occurred.
The Republican governor said Ramos gained access to the school via a backdoor to an empty classroom.
The gunman then went through a sliding door that connected the empty room to another classroom, where the carnage unfolded.
Abbott said the gunman was reportedly a high school dropout with no known criminal or mental health history.
Beto O’Rouke, the former Democratic congressman who is running for governor of Texas, interrupted the news conference and was escorted out after shouting ensued from state officials.
“You’re doing nothing. This is totally predictable,” O’Rouke shouted.
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Someone, who appeared to be on the stage, was then heard shouting, “you’re a sick son of a b***h.”
Steven McCraw, the director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, said officials have yet to uncover a motive or catalyst for the shooting.
After O’Rourke was escorted out of the auditorium, he proceeded to speak to the news media, criticizing Abbott for not supporting red flag laws, gun storage laws and an outright ban on AR-15s and AK-47s.
“This 18-year-old, who just turned 18, bought an AR-15 and took it into an elementary school and shot kids in the face and killed them,” O’Rourke told new members.
“Why are we letting this happen in this country? Why is this happening in this state? Year after year, city after city.”
FOURTH-GRADE CLASSROOM SLAUGHTER
Lt. Christopher Olivarez of the Texas Department of Public Safety told NBC’s Today on Wednesday that all the victims were in the same fourth-grade classroom.
Olivarez said the Ramos barricaded himself inside the classroom, “shooting anyone that was in his way.”
As the suspect shot at responding police officers, authorities were going around the campus, breaking windows and trying to evacuate children and staff.
They were then able to force entry into the classroom where the shooter was.
The exact number of injuries has yet to be determined; however, according to Olivarez, multiple children inside the classroom survived the deadly attack.
“We do know that there were multiple children that did survive, that were injured. I do not have the exact number at this time,” Olivarez told Fox News.
“It’s a small classroom, you can have anywhere from 25 to 30 students in there, plus there were two teachers in there. … So don’t have an exact number of how many students were in that classroom, but it could vary.
“It was a classroom setting, a typical classroom setting where you have mass groups of children inside that classroom altogether, with nowhere to go,” Olivarez added.
Governor Abbott said Ramos got into an argument with his grandmother and shot her in the face minutes before the school massacre. The unidentified woman is in critical condition.
“Evil swept across Uvalde yesterday. Anyone who shoots his grandmother in the face has to have evil in his heart,” Abbott said.
Officials revealed that Ramos bought two weapons used in the attack on his 18th birthday.
Sources told KPRC 2 that the suspect purchased two AR platform rifles on May 17 and 20.
One was left in Ramos‘ crashed car. The other, a Daniel Defense, was recovered from inside the elementary school, the outlet reported.
He also bought 375 rounds of 5.56 ammunition on May 18. In addition, seven 30-round magazines were discovered inside the school, according to records.
Ramos’ grandfather, Rolando Reyes, told ABC News that he had no idea that his grandson had purchased the weapons or that they were in his house.
Reyes, 74, who has a past felony conviction, cannot have firearms in his house, saying he would have turned his grandson in if he knew.
The 74-year-old said there were no signs the morning of the shooting that anything unusual was going to happen.
He revealed Ramos had a minor argument with his grandmother over the payment of a phone bill, but nothing significant.
Reyes said his grandson was quiet but he would sometimes take him to work with him.
“Sometimes, I’d take him to work with me. Not all the time, but sometimes. This past year he didn’t go to school. He didn’t graduate. You would try to tell him, but kids nowadays they think they know everything,” the 74-year-old told ABC.
Reyes was out of the house on Tuesday when the teen shot his grandmother.
A neighbor called him to tell him his wife had been shot, but by the time he got back to the house, Ramos had escaped in his grandmother’s car.
So far, 17 of the 19 kids have been identified by loved ones – they are students Amerie Jo Garza, Xavier Lopez, Uziyah Garcia, Makenna Lee Elrod, Ellie Garcia, Eliahana ‘Elijah Cruz’ Torres, Annabell Guadalupe Rodriguez, Tess Marie Mata, Lexi Rubio, Nevaeh Bravo, Rojelio Torres, Jayce Carmelo Luevanos, Jailah Nicole Silguero, Miranda Mathis, Jose Flores, Maite Yuleana and Alithia Ramirez.
The two teachers have been identified as Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia, who died while trying to protect their students.
The children killed were aged between seven and 11.
Amerie’s grandmother Berlinda Irene Arreola told the Daily Beast that the gunman reportedly told students that they were going to die.
Amerie was shot dead as she tried to call 911 and her best friend was reportedly left covered in blood.
Arreola said: “She had her phone, and she called 911, and instead of grabbing it and breaking it or taking it from her, he shot her.”
She added Amerie died a hero because she tried to call the emergency services.
Amerie had just received an award for getting on the A-B honor roll.
The shooting became the worst elementary school massacre since Sandy Hook in 2012.
It surpassed the number of dead in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, which left 17 teens dead and 17 others injured on Valentine’s Day in 2018.
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