Uvalde Officials Leave School Unlocked, Ignored Classroom Lock Maintenance Before Shooting

A section of a classroom door from Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, is seen as Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw testifies at a Texas Senate hearing at the state capitol, Tuesday, June 21, 2022, in Austin, Texas. Two teachers and 19 students were killed in last …
AP Photo/Eric Gay

Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw revealed critical school safety violations that contributed to the shooter being able to access the Robb Elementary School building and classrooms. The district also failed to correct at least one maintenance issue that kept the specific classroom door where the shooting took place from being lockable.

DPS Director Colonel McCraw told the Texas Senate on Tuesday that the south and west doors were placed into an unlocked setting, State Senator Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston) told Breitbart Texas Tuesday. The doors were routinely left unlocked in direct violation of the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District’s school safety directive, he related.

The director also testified that the door to classroom 112 (one of two classrooms where the shooting took place) could not be locked because the steel plate on the frame did not line up with the door’s bolt mechanism. DPS investigators verified that teacher Arnulfo Reyes previously reported the maintenance issue.

“Director McCraw testified the only way to check for sure is from the outside (of the classroom) with a key,” the senator told Breitbart.

The shooter entered the school through the unlocked south door and walked directly to the classroom with the malfunctioning lock, Texas DPS officials told Breitbart. Senator Bettencourt and DPS officials told Breitbart the shooter attended Robb Elementary School in this particular classroom as a younger child.

Uvalde school district police and other officials appeared to be unaware that the door to classroom 112 could not be locked. In a timeline released on Tuesday during the Senate hearing, multiple officers reported trying to find keys to unlock the door.

At 12:09 p.m. a Uvalde police officer says, “Go around and get the master key to the rooms.” Less than three minutes later, UCISD Police Chief Arrendondo called for a master key, per the timeline document.

At 12:16 p.m., shortly after a BORTAC Border Patrol agent arrived on scene, Chief Arrendondo said, “I just need a key.”

Eleven minutes later, the chief said, “The door is probably going to be locked. That’s the nature of this place. I am going to get more keys to test.” He then complained that the master keys were not working.

“We have the master keys and they’re not working.”

At 12:30, the chief said,” We’re ready to breach, but that door is locked.” Three minutes later he added, “I say we breach through those windows and shoot his fucking head off through the windows.”

A halligan breaching tool arrived at approximately 12:36, the timeline indicates. Six minutes later, the chief again says the door is locked.

“We’re having a fucking problem getting into the room because it is locked. They gotta get that fucking door open, bro. They can’t get that door open. We need more keys or something.”

At 12:46, the chief told the breach team to go ahead if they were ready. A sledge hammer arrived a minute later and the team entered the classroom at 12:50, bringing the incident to a close when a BORTAC agent shot and killed the shooter.

In addition to ignoring the prior classroom 1112 maintenance request, the district also ignored damaged security fencing.

The Uvalde School Preventative Security Measures policy document states:

11: PERIMETER FENCING – Dalton, Anthon, and Robb have fencing that encloses the campus is designed to limit and/or restrict access to individuals without a need to be on the campus.

17: LOCKED CLASSROOM DOOR POLICY – Teachers are instructed to keep their classroom doors closed and locked at all times. Barriers are not to be used.

Senator Bettencourt told Breitbart that there are multiple breaches in the fencing. Instead of repairing the gaps, the district strung rope. The fence is also only four feet tall–allowing the shooter to easily enter the school perimeter.

Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s What’s Your Point? Sunday-morning talk show. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX and Facebook.

Randy Clark is a 32-year veteran of the United States Border Patrol.  Prior to his retirement, he served as the Division Chief for Law Enforcement Operations, directing operations for nine Border Patrol Stations within the Del Rio, Texas, Sector. Follow him on Twitter @RandyClarkBBTX.

Uvalde Shooting Timeline as of 6-21 per Texas DPS



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