Questions swirled on Thursday as new information contradicted much of the original reporting about Tuesday's horrific mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 young children and three adults dead.
Over the last two days, the prevailing narrative was that 18-year-old Salvador Ramos outgunned police and overpowered school security on his way to carrying out unspeakable atrocities inside Robb Elementary School. Democratic politicians and left-wing media figures immediately pushed for gun control measures as the only justifiable response.
But in a matter of 24 hours, the account has changed dramatically, raising fresh questions over what else could have been done to prevent the attack.
Speaking with reporters Thursday, Victor Escalon, a regional director for the Texas Department of Public Safety, reported that Ramos walked into Robb Elementary School "unobstructed" through an unlocked door before barricading himself inside a fourth-grade classroom and opening fire on students and staff.
And contrary to original reports, the shooter never encountered an armed school security guard on his way into the building. Escalon said that while the school normally has an armed school safety officer in position, "there was not an officer, readily available, armed" when Ramos arrived on Tuesday.
The bombshell revisions come as local law enforcement continue to face mounting criticism over the amount of time that elapsed before Border Patrol agents stormed the building.
According to the Associated Press, Texas DPS spokesperson Travis Considine revealed Thursday that roughly an hour passed between Ramos entering the school and a Border Patrol tactical unit storming in to neutralize him.
Considine said Ramos began his rampage at 11:40 a.m. An hour later, the federal agents entered and at 12:58 p.m., radio chatter declared that the shooter was dead.
Texas gunman walked through apparently unlocked door, police saywww.youtube.com
Multiple outlets reported earlier on Thursday that distraught parents had gathered outside the school apparently while the attack was happening, urging police to enter the building and stop the gunman.
One video, posted on TikTok, appears to show a large group of parents pleading with officers in the parking lot. Another video, obtained by CNN, captures parents arguing and screaming at police outside the school as officers set up crime scene tape.
CNN also spoke to a parent who allegedly asked officers to give him a gun and a vest so that he could charge into the school himself.
"I told one of the officers myself, if they didn’t want to go in there, let me borrow his gun and a vest, and I’ll go in there myself to handle it, and they told me no," the parent, Robert Luna recalled, adding that he wanted the officers to "go in and get rid of that man, that shooter."
"I mean, they took a while for them to go in there. So I mean this tragedy happened, like kids didn’t make it out," he went on to say. "They were doing their job, but they could have done it quicker before that man went in the school."
Another parent, Javier Cazares, whose fourth-grade daughter was killed in the attack, told the AP he was also upset that police appeared not to be doing enough and considered rallying a group of parents to rush into the school with him.
"Let's just rush in because the cops aren't doing anything like they are supposed to," he said. "More could have been done ... they were unprepared."
To be certain, it remains unclear when exactly the videos were recorded. Likewise, it's not clear whether further efforts by police would have saved any lives. In truth, many of the details surrounding the incident are still murky at best.
On Wednesday, DPS Lt. Christopher Olivarez praised the work of law enforcement, noting how they methodically moved from classroom to classroom, breaking windows to allow students to escape.
As for allegedly not rushing into the building en masse, Olivarez said, "There was not sufficient manpower at that time, and their primary focus was to preserve any further loss of life."