tv Katy Tur Reports MSNBC May 27, 2022 11:00am-12:00pm PDT
katy tur. given the clarity of the latest version of events as laid out by the texas department of public safety based on videos and calls from the scene. i want to start with that. at 11:27 a.m., somebody at robb elementary school props a door open. it was 11:28 when the shooter crashed his truck behind the elementary school. two minutes later the first 911 call is made. a minute after that the shooter fired outside the school in the parking lot. the suspect went into the building at 11:33, went into the classroom, fired a hundred rounds three officers entered the school as the shooter did. two minutes later the gunman fires 16 more rounds by 11:51 as
many as 19 officers were in the school hallway. a student inside the class with the shooter calls 911, whispering on the phone. the tactical unit requested by those officers arrived. that's when the student called back and said there are kids still alive. 12:16, 911 operators know there are kids alive in the room. the shooter fires again. at one point 19 officers in the building according to dps. 20 minutes later, another 911 call begging police to get there now. 12:50, a tactical team breached the door to get inside and killed the gunman. an hour and 17 minutes from when police entered to the school to when police entered the room. why did it take so long to get inside that classroom where children were waiting for safety? >> it was a 40-minute gap.
if the 911 operators were aware that children were alive in that classroom, why weren't officers notified of that. and if that's the case, why didn't anybody take action. that's the question. again, i'll go back to the answer for right now is that it was considered, okay, the decision was made on the scene. i wasn't there at the same point in time a decision was made this is a barricaded subject situation. there was time to retrieve the keys and wait for a tactical team with the equipment to go ahead and breach the door and take on the subject at that point. with the benefit of hindsight where i'm sitting now, of course it was not the right decision, it was the wrong decision period. there's no excuse for that. >> here's the reality. the police response, you heard him call it a wrong decision there. it's not even the standard practice in active shooting situation. it reflects an old way of doing things when it comes to mass shootings. most active shooter attacks end
inside five minutes. to save time and lives, police are trained to send in team of officers immediately to intercept the shooter. today some of those kids in that school waiting for help are describing what they saw. >> we were watching a movie and then we just heard like banging. my teacher got up to see what it was and she yelled omg, he has a gun. whenever he started shooting, we hid behind my teacher's desk. >> the cop said help if you need help. and one of the persons in my class said help. they got overheard and he came in and shot her and then the cops barged into that classroom and he said it's time to die. i was hiding hard and i said to my friend to not talk. d to not .
>> i'm going to bring in from uvalde morgan chesky. you were at that news conference. you think this town couldn't feel more pain and then we heard from officials. we got some clarity in that new timeline. that had been a huge question of what went down in that hour. this is triggering more questions. chief among the many, was there a lack of communication between the 911 operators, who knew at 12:16 there were kids alive in that classroom and the law enforcement officers actually on
the scene? >> reporter: yeah, hallie, that is still one of the many questions that needs an answer. there is hope this will bring clarity as to that tragedy that took place here at robb elementary on tuesday and yet we're faced with even more questions. that timeline that you mentioned at the start of the newscast is absolutely critical. we are learning more about those moments leading into the shooting and it goes back to how the gunman gained entrance. they're saying a teacher for an unknown reason had propped open a door on the exterior of robb elementary school just minutes prior to the gunman wrecking his truck nearby, opening fire on two employees of a funeral home and then making his way inside the school where that door was still unlocked. we're also hearing, hallie,
about confusion and chaos that is somewhat expected. but listen to what one of the investigators had to say here, hallie, is that there was a school resource officer, he was not on campus, however he did hear the 911 call come in from one of the teachers inside that there was an active shooter. in his rush to get to the school, he apparently drove right by the suspect, who was crouched down outside the school hiding and proceeded to drive to the back of the school where he saw an individual he thought might be the shooter that actually ended up being a teacher. that of course was an oversight that ended up proving to be a potentially fatal one because it was just a short time thereafter the gunman started opening fire outside the school, shooting inside the classrooms and then walked in through that unlocked door. all of this comes down to that timeline. we know at 12:03 there were as many as 19 officers inside, by
12:15 there were tactical shields that had arrived here. the director of dps saying they wanted to wait for the tactical gear because of the gun power of the gunman. >> you had at least 15 officers and shields on scene yet you did not reach the door until 12:50. >> i said it before, first of all, when it comes to an active shooter, you don't have to wait on tactical gear. you got an obligation. >> do you -- >> what i know now, absolutely. it was an active shooter. keep in mind, in the doctrine of active shooters, you can transition from an active shooter situation to a barricaded subject or a barricaded with hostage subject. if shooting continues and you have any reason to believe there are individuals alive you have
an obligation to go back to an active shooter posture and that means everybody at the door. >> reporter: and the director went on to say whenever someone here at that scene made that decision to transition from an active shooter to a barricaded shooter, that decision was made because someone here believed that those inside were thought to be safe. and you hear that and you ask yourself how that decision could have been made when they had proof in those 911 calls that there were still children inside that classroom where the gunman was. it is tough to wrap your mind around and yet there is still so much more to learn about how all of this transpired. >> it's a gut punch. can i ask you to stand by for one second. i want to talk to you about the victims. pete, very quickly, i'd like you to jump in here. i know you have a network of law enforcement experts that you talk to all day long.
can you help us understand and for people who are not law enforcement experts, how this could have happened and what you're hearing. >> well, of course i think the general feeling is that this was the wrong decision to make clear. and i think another thing should be clear, made clear to people that may not understand this. the person that was doing the briefing, the head of the department of public safety, it was not his officers in the school that day. these were local police officers who in an onscene commander making these decision. they you now in the position of coming in to investigate. some people thought it was dps or texas rangers in there. that's one thing to be clear about. what he is talking about here is a subject -- a discussion among police departments about when you hold back from going in when there's an active shooter.
if you think that the situation has transitioned from somebody actively shooting at people to somebody holding hostages, the question is if you barge in, does that make it worse and because the shooter to become active and start shooting at whoever may be left in there. that's apparently what went through the minds of the police commander. and of course the down side of that is that if you have wounded people inside a room and you're waiting, those people may need immediate medical attention. they may be bleeding profusely and could benefit from having a quick response. so it's never a simple decision and here i think the general consensus is that it was the wrong decision. >> morgan, let me go back to you. for now, 24-plus hours we have heard from and seen these images of parents furious, right. people showing up at the school. we've seen the facebook videos.
nbc news does not know specifically when in the time line those videos were taken, interviews you have done and our colleagues have done, there is not just despair and grief from people in the community but real anger over this. this news conference only ended an hour ago. i don't know if you had a chance to talk to people since this new information came out. can you give us any sense of what's happening in the community right now? >> reporter: they're torn, hallie. they're torn between hearing shocking details about what actually happened on that day and also trying to move on. 21 crosses behind me, 21 burials in the days to come. these families are going to have to cope with that while also hearing disturbing facts come to light about potentially the worst thought of all this, hallie, is what could have been prevented. how many more lives could have been saved had always moved in faster. they had access about 12:03 with
19 officers, that door was breached with a key that belonged to a custodian at 12:50. that's a long time. very long time. in this case it's the time that will weigh heavily on the hearts and minds of this community for arguably their entire lifetimes, hallie, because we've seen in recent active shooter situations there have been breakdowns where a response time is five minutes or less from the time they arrived until they engaged the shooter. we do know there were some circumstances that were different here. he did open fire on local police when they were the first to arrive, but to have that amount of officers inside, hallie, while i have not spoken directly to a family member who lost a loved one in here, those in the community just as shocked as you and i are. and the fact that they live here and know the people directly impacted because this is such a
tight-knit town, it hurts even more. >> just gutting. morgan chesky, i'm going to let you go. pete, can i go to you for something, the morgan reference, when i was the 19 officers in the hallway. the texas department of public safety made clear that the on-site commander said this was a barricade situation and the officers were not to move in. they were there in the hall, in the school. there was an illusion essentially saying there were plenty of people to do what would have needed to have been done inside that school. that's what we heard from dps. under what conditions would a law enforcement officer go against the on-site commander and take an action if they felt it was accounted for? help us understand that piece of it. >> there may have been some of that here. we don't know all the facts yet. it may be some of the decision to move in is in spite of what
the on-scene commander was saying. that's another thing to be row revealed here. one thing we learned from the young people who survived the shooting is a couple of things. number one, all the things that went wrong here, the school resource officer not seeing ramos because he was hiding when he drove by, the fact that the door to the school was propped open, the fact that the classroom door was unlocked, that's a violation of the county's own school safety protocol that said classroom doors have to be locked at all times for the very purpose of keeping shooters outside of the classroom. the third thing we learned from some of the survivors is that the door to the classroom did have a window and some of these survivors said that ramos shot the window out. and i think even if you can't breach the door, you can't open the door, the question is why not fire through the window in the classroom in, in hallway, and why not fire through the
exterior windows of the classroom. because some of the reports were that ramos was firing out of the windows of the classroom outside the school. that's some of the early read that we got from the texas department of public safety. again, all these facts just raise more questions, hallie. >> barbara, let me go to you. congressman joaquin castro wants a federal investigation into the response here. in your view is this something based on the facts that have been laid out now over the last two hours today, does this sound like something that would rise to a federal investigation into the police response? >> generally no. police investigations are typically based on violations of civil rights or patterns and practices of constitutional violations, discriminatory policing. this sound more like incompetence. the border patrol, the u.s. border patrol was involved. so there could be some investigation of their role. but it sound like the real problem was with the local
police department that had this on-scene commander and had perhaps a miscommunication with the dispatcher. some states have charges for neglect of duty. police officers have an affirmative duty that makes their omissions potentially criminal. i think what's far more likely here is there ultimately will be civil lawsuits brought by all of the families and sound like they may have a very strong case. >> we are now three days out from the shooting itself. typically we know and we've all covered these similar scenes, though this is particularly horrific. there is information that comes out, there tend to be inconsistencies and gaps and things we don't know. are you surprised now friday afternoon we are just getting the first clarity on the timeline and what happened? >> i am. and as you said, often times the first information is not accurate, people are trying to piece it together, the scene is
chaotic. that's why law enforcement typically wants to wait and only issue statements that it has verified and give you briefings that might evolve as they learn more information but be really careful not to pass on false information. we've seen here information that was false, an officer shooting at the shooter before he was in the school, which turns out not to have happened. it doesn't seem like so much a coverup as an amateur effort by this police department. as pete said, since columbine the strategy has been to get inside a building as quickly as possible to stop a shooter and help the victims who might be lying there and pleading out. columbine was in 1999. it seems hike seems like the st execution and communication was poor. >> pete, final thoughts. >> i think there's lots of things to be learned about the
police department. i agree with barbara that i don't see the point of an fbi investigation. the fbi doesn't -- they're not the bureau that comes in and does independent civil investigations. they investigate potential crimes. so i think this is going to remain in the hands of the department of public safety. you heard the fbi official from san antonio say at the news conference that that's their posture now, they'll continue to support that investigation. i don't see that situation changing. >> pete williams, barbara mcquaid, thanks to the both of you. we'll go live to houston where the nra is holding its annual investigation, the politicians who are there and the push back on the ground. and a bipartisan group of senators looking to find a way forward on gun safety reforms. and in just about two hours from now we expect another update from texas governor greg abbott speaking in uvalde. n uvalde
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something like 300 miles from robb elementary, tens of thousands of gun owners and gun advocates are gathering for the nra's annual convention in houston, billed as this freedom-filled weekend for the entire family. senator cruz is set to address the crowd about an hour from now followed by donald trump. shaq, a lot of people, very heavy police expected. gun reform advocates, i can hear they started already. >> reporter: that's right. you see the convention center behind me. that is where you'll have tens of thousands of nra members and vendors going in and having this convention. but right across the street and we'll show you around, this is where you're having another group of thousands of people coming out and calling for gun
safety measures. this is right in the park across the street from the convention center and it's a collision of groups. we're talking about black lives matter houston, moms demand action, every town for gun safety. the democratic party is here having voter registration. you see the massive stage up there. we've seen congresswoman sheila jackson lee and we know beto o'roarke, the gubernatorial candidate will be speaking. they want some action on gun reform. and they want to take this message to the politicians who will be at the nra convention. i want you to listen to what some of the protesters had to tell me a few minutes ago. >> this mass shooting in uvalde just touched us off. we're so furious about it. >> things need to change. the nra is the largest contributor to financial campaigns and the only thing easier to buy than an a.r.-15 is
a gop politician. >> we have to keep trying. we can't just blow it off and say, oh well. whatever i can do, i'll do it. >> reporter: you heard that sentiment in that last sound there. look at this sign here. this is one of the main specific calls you've been hearing, ban assault weapons. people know there are 50 republican senators who are opposed to the idea of banning assault weapons on a federal level but you have people here saying that doesn't matter, they want a call to that change and they want specific policy enacted. they say they're going to continue to take their message to the ballot box because this is an issue that important to folks coming out here, hallie. >> one piece of this, too, shaq, we talked to somebody last night, who said a bunch of convention attendees and one of them said they didn't feel like what was going to happen was going to change opinions of attendees going to the nra
event. what's been interesting is the way the speakers lineup has changed since this horrific attack happened some 300 miles away. senator john cornyn dropping out, citing a scheduling conflict, you've got musicians at this concert who were supposed to play at this nra conflict saying it would be disrespectful and out of respect they will not perform here this weekend. ted cruz i think is the only top texas republican who is going to be speaking there. obviously along with former president trump. i wonder if you've heard any reaction from attendees about the shrinking speakers lineup, if you will. >> reporter: yeah. when you look at the lineup changes, even as you described them right there, the politicians, most of them are still speaking, those texas governor greg abbott will not be
here in person. he's still addressing the convention here but you have performers that were set to perform tomorrow night. they are the ones who dropped out and specifically cited the shooting as being the reason why they dropped out. as far as the attendees, they know how contentious this is. i spoke with a lot of them as they were going into the convention center there and they will tell you they feel for the people in that community, they feel for the horror and tragedy that we saw earlier had week but they said they separate that from the policies that they want enacted. they want to protect their second amendment. they don't see some of the proposals like an assault weapons ban is the way to go. that's where you're going to have direct clashes. we're seeing them outside of the square as attendees are coming in, you're seeing protesters confront them. police are there. it's not violent right now but you're seeing the confrontation.
the passion is on both sides, hallie. >> thank you very much. i want to bring in former firearms executive ryan busy. let me start with what you've seen in houston days after this massacre. >> though protests are much larger than any i've seen. i think the hate in this country has ripped us apart in so many ways. i know how they're going to rally the troops and try to demonize all of these folks who are on screen now trying to fight to make the world a better place. the fact is they've done that time and time and time again. that you have blocked just very basic, sensible changes, universal background checks. for god sake, there's 80% plus approval and the nra has done
anything it can to block them. it blocked universal background checks very purposefully after the last school shooting in 2012. there's not a lot of history of being very responsible there. >> you worked in the gun industry for more than 25 years. you say that you know what they're going to do. you said something like you know how they're going to rally the people inside that convention center. what do you expect? >> when something like this happens, the mantra will be, see, look at this, they're going to capitalize on the death of young kids and try to take our freedoms, we have to stand stalwart against those who would use tragedy to take our freedoms, our freedoms are more important than anything. this is the marginalization they use to radicalize the troops. people advocating for very did
decent, basic, common sense things that so many gun owners are in favor of. thousands of gun owners have reached out to me to say enough is enough, thank you for speaking up. we're gun owners but we're not like that. we want reasonable reform. the nra only succeeds when they can drown out those regional people. they have to demonize the people on the lawn and keep demonizing reasonable people who want simple things like background checks. there's a bill before the senate. they could do it tomorrow. >> i want to share with you the statement the nra released. they say: a released they say: does anything in that response
you find unpredictable? >> it's always a lone gun man that went bad. certainly it was a lone gunman. but that didn't just happen on its own. we've arrived here because there's a whole culmination of events and the nra -- the nra has set forth a prairie fire politically in this country and it's about time we put it out. >> ryan busse, thank you for being with us this afternoon. we appreciate your time. you heard us reference with mr. busse what's going on on capitol hill. we'll go to capitol hill for any negotiations on this gun reform bill. reform bill uh, how come we don't call ourselves bikers anymore? i mean, "riders" is cool, but "bikers"...is really cool.
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assault weapons to civilians, she says reaping a profit from the death of innocent mearns. there's a new push to pass some sort of meaningful reform of guns on capitol hill. you have a bipartisan group of senators that's met for really early talks, pretty informal and this push being headed by senators chris murphy and richard blumenthal. they've been given a tight deadline of ten days. i want to bring in senior congressional reporter scott long. i'm glad to have you with us. it fees like democrats have been trying to tempering expectations, taking a pragmatic approach. talk about what else is being discussed. >> reporter: i think it's very
important to talk about it regarding three buckets. they're pairing off dan's partners, if you will. that's one bucket, red flag laws that would allow authorities to confiscation guns from people who are a danger to themselves or others. and kirstjen sinema, she's pairing off with bill cassidy of louisiana. they're looking at mental health issues and school security. a third group, joe manchin and senator toomey. they got a deal on expanding background checks for online sales and also gun shows. they're reprising those efforts again. i caught up with pat toomey yesterday where he talked a little bit about his relationship with joe manchin, as well as his prospects for some sort of bipartisan deal.
>> joe and i have a long history of working together and history of mutual respect and friendship. and that's my relationship with joe. >> does this feel any different than last time? >> does a little bit. yeah. >> how so? >> it just seems that there's greater intensity and a greater sense of urgency than we've had in the past for a while. >> reporter: and so you heard from pat toomey there, the republican from pennsylvania known as a deal maker, worked closely with joe manchin. he basically is talking about this idea of intensity, how it feels differently on capitol hill, in part because we have seen a number of shootings over the last couple weeks targeting black shoppers in buffalo, new york, school children down in texas, asian church-goers in
southern california. and so lawmakers, you know, america's looking for leadership from their national leaders here and there's a big question of whether or not members of congress, folks in the white house will be able to step up to the plate in this moment. >> scott, thank you. coming up next, confusion and some unanswered questions. we're going back to uvalde. and students in texas reflect on the lives lost at robb elementary and their fear it is could happen to them. >> it could have been anyone, could have been any school. it's really sad and scary that it's kind of getting closer, you know. getting closer, you know have ever seen. and you can find him right now on upwork.com when the world is your workforce, finding the perfect project manager,
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teacher called 911 at 11:30 in the morning, two minutes after the gunman crashed his truck behind the school. he went into the building and fired 100 rounds. two minutes later officers entered the school from the same door the shooter did. by 11:51, 19 officers were in the hallway. 59 minutes after police were in the hallway law enforcement finally breached that classroom door and shot and killed the killer. the question is with all the police on scene, why didn't anyone do anything sooner? i want to bring in yasmin vossoughian and investigations correspondent tom winter. you were at that news conference. tell us what stood out to you. >> reporter: so much stood out to me. i think -- so a couple. questions that i asked i think were kind of the major standouts and that is this discrepancy as to how long it took from when
the 911 calls came in to when the shooter was neutralized around 12:50. 11:30 is when that first 911 call came in. we were talking an hour and 20 minutes when the first call came in, the crash outside the school and the shooter was neutralized, an hour and 20 minutes later. room 112, another 911 call comes in from a teacher whispering saying there are eight to nine children alive inside the classroom. there is an active shooter inside this classroom. they are following 911 calls after that, 12:10, 12:21 n the shooter was subsequently neutralized. you think about if you are a parent in this scenario who lost a child, you cannot help but wonder, a, did that teacher survive that made the 911 call
at 12:03. i asked that question at the press conference. i did not get a straight answer to that. definitively the only answer we got was two 911 calls are that were students did survive. the eight to nine children that we were told the teacher said were alive. did they in fact survive? we don't know the answer to that. talk about the golden hour. i spoke to a physician earlier today, a doctor who delivered some of these kids that are now no longer with us. he said to me there is a golden hour in responding to trauma situations. we know this. you don't need to be a trauma surgeon to know this. the sooner you get someone to the hospital, the more likely it is you can save a life. basically there was an hour and 20 minutes from that first 911 call that was made that there was an accident and someone armed with a gun is racing towards the school to when the
subject was neutralized. 19 officers for about 35 minutes or so were inside that school armed with firearms and were not able to penetrate the doorway. we don't know why. we don't know why they were not able to penetrate the doorway. what was the barricade? and finally the key was obtained, they were able to get into the doorway and neutralize the shooter. so we learned some, right, that the school resource officer, he was not on campus. once he learned of the shooting, he raced towards campus, bypassed the shooter and headed straight towards a teacher he thought was the shooter subsequently. we're waiting to hear from the governor who is going to be holding a press conference at 4:30 eastern time. >> you'll see that life and the headlines over on nbc news now, too. tom, you've been listening to all these developments. like our friend pete williams and colleague in touch with your network of law enforcement
forces around the country. the on-site commander thought the shooter was barricaded in the classroom and there were no more children at risk. the timeline suggests absolutely otherwise since there was a 911 call inside the room that kids were alive 30 minutes before officers went in. >> that's exactly right, hallie. i think that's going to be a huge question is this idea of whether or not that was passed along to the incident commander. clearly 911 was made available. obviously they have those calls. that's why they were able to go into such detail. the question now going forward is what was communicated to the incident commander. i think there are some things that i think pete alluded to it earlier this hour. there are some things we don't quite know yet. i think it's important to remember that steven mcgrew, who gave the press conference today, he was not the commander, it's not his officers. but i think they're still trying to get some answers and that's their job. so i think we'll end up ultimately hearing who made the decision to go in and i think there's some questions around
that and who was involved in that. so there's many more details. i think looking at this in its totality, where do we go from here next as far as figuring out more details about what happened. we have some more clarity today as far as the law enforcement response. i'm very interested in the series of group chats that this person had leading up to it where he talks about the purchase of a gun, somebody asks him if he's going to do something or he's going to shoot up the school or something like that. i want to get the specific notes and be clear on that, halle. basically there's this ongoing instagram chat that starts in february of this year and i think that's something that we're really going to have to get more detail here. >> thanks to the both of you for being with us. >> there have been more than 20 shootings in this calendar year alone so far. we'll hear from middle schoolers and high schoolers who say not
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processing what happened to those 19 children and two teachers this week in uvalde. you see their faces. 19 of them. two hero teachers. lives taken far too soon. students now all across the country and in texas are thinking about their own safety in school. some of whom are still there. >> have you ever worried about a school shooting during the school day? >> yes. >> it has crossed my mind before. >> i don't think i have mostly because the reassurance of the faculty and staff. >> i don't see any threat or anyone who have school shooting. >> reporter: all of the middle school in the dallas area and just graduated from high school this week. all of them sad, frustrated and
confused about the shooting at robb elementary cool this week. >> it's like emotional and kind of sad to hear. it could have been anyone. it could have been any school. it's just really sad and scary it's getting closer. >> there's so many more things we need to put in place to stop those things if taking place. >> what is your stance on gun control? >> i think guns could be less available but like they're good in certain situations. >> sometimes you need to have guns like for protection and stuff. >> guns are used for violence. nothing but violence or self-protect you. if you're not going to use it to protect you then you shouldn't have it. >> how do you think this keeps happening and there's no change? >> government and lawmakers think that politics and money are more important than human
lives. just because you get paid money, doesn't mean you shouldn't risk human lives. >> i believe if you're under 18, you should be like a driver's license license. you have to study, take your test and you're approved by professional. >> if they banned guns, there's always a way to get something. you know how when your mom is like don't do this. because you said don't do it, i feel i have to. there's a possibility there might be more school shootings. you never know. >> do you think by the time you're done with school, this will be an issue? >> i feel like i'm somewhere in between pessimistic and optimistic about that. i feel there could be change and it would take a long time. >> they trusted this school. they dropped them off thinking it's a regular -- it's like a regular day.
then you go to pick them up and they're not there. i just want to like give my condolences to the families because it's hard. i can't even imagine. >> thanks for that reporting. stay with me for another what we know will be busy hour of news including the nra convention, senator ted cruz all set to speak. we're looking ahead to the news conference with governor greg abbott. the first time we will hear from him. stay with us. the first time we will hear from him. stay with us what goes on it. usually. and in it. mostly. here to meet those high standards is the walgreens health and wellness brand.
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