Reports: Police didn’t try to open doors for 77 minutes before confronting Uvalde gunman

A source close to the investigation said surveillance footage showed police didn't check to see whether the doors were unlocked.

click to enlarge State troopers stand guard outside Robb Elementary School the day after the shooting. - JOSEPH GUILLEN
Joseph Guillen
State troopers stand guard outside Robb Elementary School the day after the shooting.
While waiting 77 minutes in the hallway of the Uvalde elementary school where a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers, police didn't try to open doors to the two classrooms where the bloodshed took place, the Express-News reports.

Citing a law enforcement source close to the investigation, the daily reported over the weekend that surveillance footage showed police didn't check to see whether the doors were unlocked. The source also said the gunman could not have locked the classrooms from the inside.

Citing an unnamed source, ABC News also reported over the weekend that officers failed to check whether the doors were locked.

That new twist to the story came after Uvalde school district Police Chief Pete Arredondo told the Texas Tribune that officers delayed their move because he had to wait for a janitor to bring keys for the school. Arredondo, who was in charge of the police response, told the news site that he tried dozens of keys but none worked.

The reports by the Express-News and ABC are the latest to raise questions about law enforcement's handling of the worst school shooting in Texas history. Police officials and state leaders, including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, have faced withering criticism for offering changing — and, at times, contradictory — accounts of the events.

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