‘Of Course It Was Not The Right Decision!’: DPS Director Says Cops Should Have Charged Uvalde School
Police officers speak near a makeshift memorial for the shooting victims outside Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, on May 27, 2022. - Texas police faced angry questions May 26, 2022 over why it took an hour to neutralize the gunman who murdered 19 small children and two teachers in Uvalde, as video emerged of desperate parents begging officers to storm the school. (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP) (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)

Texas DPS Director Steven McCraw said Friday that police officers were wrong to wait for tactical backup before breaching Robb Elementary School to take down the active shooter on Tuesday afternoon.

McCraw responded to criticisms of the police response to the shooting during a press conference, and while he noted that things can certainly become chaotic and confused in real time, he also said that there were very specific directives that officers were trained to follow in active shooter situations.

McCraw began by explaining that while there were 19 officers on the scene — which he said would have been more than enough to move on the suspect — but that the incident commander at the scene had opted to respond based on a “barricaded suspect” scenario rather than an “active shooter” scenario.

“The incident commander inside believed they needed more equipment and more officers to do a tactical breach of that point,” McCraw explained, noting that they had immediately called for backup and then executed a “dynamic entry” when it arrived.

Everyone began talking at once then, and McCraw held up his hands. “For the benefit of hindsight, the hey, standby. Standby. Hey. Standby. I’ve got it. I’ve got it. Okay,” he said. “Hey, for the benefit of hindsight where I am sitting now, of course it was not the right decision it was the wrong decision period. There is no excuse for that.”

“Again, I wasn’t there but I am just telling you from what we know we believe there should have been an entry as soon as you can, hey, when there is an active shooter the rules change,” McCraw continued, adding, “It is no longer a barricaded subject. You don’t have time.”

McCraw went on to note that, in an active shooter situation, the doctrine demanded that they go in whether they felt as though they had enough people or not.

“By the way, Texas embraces active shooter training, active shooter certification. That doctrine requires officers, we don’t care what agency you are from you don’t have to have a leader on the scene,” McCraw said. “Every officer lines, up stacks up, goes and finds where the rounds are being fired at, and keeps shooting to the subject is dead, period.”

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