The Robb Elementary School teacher who propped open an exterior door that law enforcement said a gunman used to get inside and kill 19 students and two teachers had closed the door but it did not lock, state police said Tuesday.
Investigators initially said the teacher had propped the door open with a rock and did not remove it before Salvador Ramos, 18, entered the school in Uvalde, Texas, on May 24. Investigators have now determined that the teacher, who has not been identified, removed the rock and closed the door when she realized there was a shooter on campus but that it did not lock, said Travis Considine, chief communications officer for the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Considine said the teacher initially propped the door open but ran back inside to get her phone and call 911 when Ramos crashed his truck.
“She came back out while on her phone, she heard someone yell, ‘He has a gun!’, she saw him jump the fence and that he had a gun, so she ran back inside,” removing the rock when she did, Considine said.
He continued: “We did verify she closed the door. The door did not lock. We know that much and now investigators are looking into why it did not lock.”
San Antonio attorney Don Flanery told the San Antonio Express-News that the Robb Elementary School employee, whom he’s not naming, closed the door shut after realizing that a gunman was on the loose.
“She saw the wreck,” Flanary told the newspaper. “She ran back inside to get her phone to report the accident. She came back out while on the phone with 911. The men at the funeral home yelled, ‘He has a gun!’ She saw him jump the fence, and he had a gun so she ran back inside.
“She kicked the rock away when she went back in. She remembers pulling the door closed while telling 911 that he was shooting. She thought the door would lock because that door is always supposed to be locked.”
The Texas Department of Public Safety also said Tuesday that Uvalde police chief Pete Arredondo had provided an initial interview but has “not responded to a request for a followup interview with the Texas Rangers that was made two days ago.”
Arredondo was elected to the Uvalde City Council on May 7 and was set to be sworn in Tuesday, but the meeting will not be taking place as scheduled. Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin said in a statement that Arredondo had been “duly elected” to the City Council, and “there is nothing in the City Charter, Election Code, or Texas Constitution that prohibits him from taking the oath of office. To our knowledge, we are currently not aware of any investigation of Mr. Arredondo.”
“Our focus on Tuesday is on our families who lost loved ones. We begin burying our children tomorrow, the innocent victims of last week’s murders at Robb Elementary School,” McLaughlin said Monday.
This report was published on CBS News.