The director of Texas’ Department of Public Safety revealed this week that the police officer husband of a slain Robb Elementary School teacher was detained and disarmed when he tried to enter the school to save his wife.
An 18-year-old male, who will not be named per Daily Wire policy, killed 19 students and two teachers at the elementary school on May 24.
Col. Steven McCraw testified that now-deceased teacher Eva Mireles called her husband, identified as Uvalde CISD Police Officer Ruben Ruiz, “shortly after the gunman attacked her classroom and told him ‘she had been shot and was dying,’” KWTX reported.
“He tried to move forward into the hallway,” McCraw told lawmakers. “He was detained and they took his gun away from him and escorted him off the scene.”
KWTX noted that the director neglected to reveal which agency disarmed and removed Ruiz from school grounds.
During the same testimony, McCraw slammed the police response to the shooting as an “abject failure,” adding that the shooter could have been apprehended within three minutes of entering the school, as officers waited for “a key that was not needed.”
“There’s compelling evidence that the law enforcement response to the attack at Robb Elementary was an abject failure and antithetical to everything we’ve learned over the last two decades since the Columbine massacre,” he said.
“Three minutes after the subject entered the West building, there was sufficient number of armed officers wearing body armor to isolate, distract, and neutralize the subject,” McCraw continued. “The only thing stopping the hallway of dedicated officers from entering room 111 and 112 was the on-scene commander who decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children.”
The director added that officers were, in part, waiting for a “key that was not needed.” “I have great reasons to believe it was never secured,” he testified. “How about trying the door and seeing if it’s locked?”
The response to the tragedy has been heavily scrutinized. One mother claimed she was briefly handcuffed by U.S. Marshals before she ran into the school herself to save her two children.
“The police were doing nothing,” mother Angeli Rose Gomez accused, according to The Wall Street Journal. “They were just standing outside the fence. They weren’t going in there or running anywhere.”
Gomez said “she was one of numerous parents waiting outside the school who began encouraging— first politely, and then with more urgency — police and other law enforcement to enter the school sooner,” the Journal report outlined. “After a few minutes, she said, U.S. Marshals put her in handcuffs, telling her she was being arrested for intervening in an active investigation.”
Desperate to reach her children, the mother said she was able to convince local Uvalde officers whom she knew to get the marshals to un-cuff her.
“Once freed from her cuffs, Ms. Gomez made her distance from the crowd, jumped the school fence, and ran inside to grab her two children,” the report detailed. “She sprinted out of the school with them.”
A spokesman for the U.S. Marshals Service has denied to the Journal that any parents were put in handcuffs.