Frantic parents attempted to enter a Texas high school because there was a report of an active shooter on the campus – which was later determined to be false. The concerned parents clashed with police officers as they attempted to access Jefferson High School, which was on lockdown. One wounded man was thrown to the ground by a police officer.
There were reports of a school shooting around 1 p.m. on Tuesday. San Antonio police officers conducted a room-by-room search with strike teams, according to Chief Johnny Reyes of the San Antonio Independent School District police.
With the failures of law enforcement during the Uvalde school shooting fresh in their minds, hundreds of parents rushed to the school after they heard of the purported shooter.
The school was on lockdown because of the potentially deadly threat. Panic-stricken parents attempted to enter the school, but were denied entry by police officers – some with physical force.
"Increasingly angry parents waiting for more than an hour outside said they had received messages from kids who had heard shots," the Express-News reported. "Some said it started with a fight."
Video shows a man wailing in agony as he clutched his severely bleeding arm that was reportedly cut when he broke a glass window at the school. Suddenly, a police officer slammed him to the ground. A crowd of parents gathered around the man as he was being handcuffed.
The San Antonio Police Department said the man was provided with a tourniquet and taken to the hospital with "non-life-threatening" injuries.
School district officials said the man will not face charges.
Cops and parents got in each other's faces during the shambolic response to the school shooting that never actually happened. A police officer is seen pushing a man.
The police department said that some individuals "became unruly."
WOAI reporter Matt Roy posted videos of the chaotic scene at Jefferson High School.
(WARNING: Graphic video)
The San Antonio Police Department said at 2:26 p.m. on Tuesday, "The school has been cleared and is deemed safe."
Jefferson High School student Marty Gonzalez told KSAT-TV, "I'm supposed to feel happy at school, be happy with my friends and today was not one of those days. Today my life could have been on the line."
Student Christopher Corrales added, "This is one of the things that I’m going to have to try and move on from and it’s also going to be one of the things I'm going to remember for the rest of my life. They just told us to put our hands up but still, a gun pointed at you, aimed at your face is not right."
Students are required to turn in their phones at the beginning of each class.
Audrey Cardenas – a mother of a Jefferson High School student – said she was panicked over the situation.
"I couldn’t get ahold of him, and if it was an active shooter, what if he was one that got shot, and I wouldn’t have known? Like, it’s not okay," Cardenas said. "It's not okay to take their phones away, especially with what happened at Robb Elementary. It’s not okay."
Chief Reyes said of allowing students to have phones, "It's an opportunity to have direct communication with what’s going on inside. It’s also communication they may have with their parents that says, 'Mom, I’m okay. Dad, I’m fine.'"
San Antonio Independent School District Superintendent Jaime Aquino said of the school's phone policy, "They wanted to make sure that they, the students, didn’t have phones that interrupted instruction, but we don’t have a policy, and every campus can revisit that."
Aquino referred to the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, where 19 children and two teachers were murdered and it took law enforcement 77 minutes to neutralize the shooter. "I'm assuming that if we had not had Uvalde, perhaps we would not have the reaction of the parents. So we just have to understand that," Aquino said.
"This is not going to be a Uvalde situation. We are going to react and respond appropriately," Aquino added.
On Wednesday, San Antonio Independent School District officials said protocols were executed properly, but communication with parents can and will be improved. The school district plans to start sending emergency text message alerts to parents and using bullhorns to communicate with large crowds.