Police in Texas have revised key details about Tuesday’s deadly school shooting as criticism mounts from parents over the initial response.
The gunman roamed outside the Uvalde school for 12 minutes before entering unchallenged, police said on Thursday.
That contradicted earlier statements which said the attacker was confronted and shot at by an on-site officer.
He killed 19 children and two teachers before he was shot dead 90 minutes after he arrived, police said.
That delay, combined with video footage showing frustrated parents being tackled and handcuffed by police while the gunman is still inside the school, has led to growing public anger and scrutiny of the early response.
It has also called into question claims by state Governor Greg Abbott, who earlier this week hailed the “quick response” of “valiant local officials” who he said had engaged the gunman before he entered the school. “They showed amazing courage by running toward gunfire,” he said.
The latest timeline was given at a news conference by Texas Ranger Victor Escalon, who said several times that he wanted to “clear up” previous statements. He defended the police response and spoke of the emotional toll the shooting had taken on officers. “We’re all hurting inside,” he said.
But the timeline of events was still unclear after Thursday’s briefing, and questions remain about how long it took officers to arrive and why the gunman, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was inside the school for more than an hour before he was killed – not by local officers – but by a tactical unit led by US border agents.