Texas DPS Lieutenant Offers Jaw-Dropping Excuse for Why Police Didn't Engage Uvalde Shooter

Texas DPS Lieutenant Offers Jaw-Dropping Excuse for Why Police Didn't Engage Uvalde Shooter
Townhall Media/Julio Rosas

The police response to the deadly mass shooting in Uvalde, TX, is continuing to draw scrutiny after a litany of revelations emerged on Thursday. Some of those came directly from the Texas DPS, which gave a press conference earlier in the day in which it was admitted officers retreated and waited on a tactical team. Other eyewitness accounts filled in the gaps, alleging that police were sitting on the sidelines for an hour before the Border Patrol showed up to neutralize the shooter.

Now, an appearance by a Texas DPS Lieutenant, Chris Olivarez, is making waves after he gave a jaw-dropping excuse for why those officers didn’t engage the shooter at all costs. Here’s what he had to say on CNN.

The active shooter situation, you want to stop the killing, you want to preserve life, but also one thing that – of course, the American people need to understand — that officers are making entry into this building. They do not know where the gunman is. They are hearing gunshots.

They are receiving gunshots. At that point, if they proceeded any further not knowing where the suspect was at, they could’ve been shot, they could’ve been killed, and that gunman would have had an opportunity to kill other people inside that school.

While I sympathize with the desire to not be shot, it’s incredibly clear that in an active shooter situation, especially at a school, the risk of taking a bullet is part of the job as a police officer. After the Columbine shooting, police best practice became entering and confronting the shooter, never treating things like a hostage situation. That is for obvious reasons, which became apparent during the Uvalde shooting, when officers barricaded the shooter into a classroom loaded with kids, after which he systematically killed most of them.

There is absolutely no reason for officers to stand around for an hour, not attempting to take out an active shooter in any modern context. It’s not three decades ago. We know what is what with these school shootings, yet the response by the Uvalde police presented like something out of the 1990s. The learned lessons of Parkland, FL, where police also waited around and didn’t confront the shooter immediately, were nowhere to be found.

Regardless, even if this DPS officer truly believes what he’s saying, it’s an absolutely terrible thing to say out loud. It’s essentially admitting that the police department valued the lives of adult officers more than small children. That’s perverse at best, and it’s an attitude that demands a reckoning. There has to be a major investigation here, and heads need to roll, from the decision-makers to the officers who didn’t take the initiative.

Lastly, the officials at the forefront of this tragedy need to understand that their comments carry weight. There are a lot of parents who will never see their children again watching, and they don’t want excuses. They want answers.

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