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Uvalde Principal Disputes Report's Charges on Security Lapses

The principal of Uvalde's Robb Elementary School, who was placed on leave more than two months after a mass shooting there, has pushed back on some of a Texas House committee’s conclusions about campus security, reports the Texas Tribune. In a letter to the House committee investigating the May 24 shooting, Mandy Gutierrez argued that the door to the classroom the gunman is believed to have entered had a functioning lock, that she was trained not to use the school’s public address system during shooting situations and that there was not a culture of complacency about security at the school. “It is unfair and inaccurate to conclude that I ever [became] complacent on any security issue of Robb Elementary,” Gutierrez said.

The House committee report pointed to several failures in law enforcement’s response to the shooting and issues at Robb Elementary that allowed the shooter to enter the school unobstructed before killing 19 children and two teachers. The report concluded that while Robb's active-shooter policy called for classroom doors to be locked, multiple witnesses said employees often left interior and exterior doors unlocked or propped open. The report said that the door to Room 111 — which investigators believe the shooter entered — was known to be faulty, though no one made a substantive effort to repair it. Gutierrez said the room had a functioning lock, including daily checks by custodial staff. She added that in “an aged building” like Robb, some doors needed to be shut forcibly to engage the locking mechanism. “Teachers know this and work around it,” Gutierrez said.


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