A mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, left at least 21 people dead.
Armed police officers were standing outside the school during the attack, bystanders told the AP.
They said they were angry at the police’s apparent lack of action and debated charging in themselves.
Bystanders were so frustrated with police officers not entering Robb Elementary School during Tuesday’s shooting that they considered storming the building themselves, the Associated Press reported.
Juan Carranza, who lives opposite the school in Uvalde, Texas, told the AP that people were shouting at police officers to enter the building as the shooting unfolded, but to no avail.
“Go in there! Go in there!” he said he heard one woman shouting.
Javier Cazares, whose daughter was one of the victims of the attack, told the AP that he suggested storming the school building with other bystanders because the police “weren’t doing anything.”
“Let’s just rush in because the cops aren’t doing anything like they are supposed to,” Cazares suggested to people, he told the AP.
“They were unprepared,” Cazares said in reference to the police officers. “More could have been done.”
It is currently unclear if any police officers were in the building at the time. Officials said that two officers who encountered the shooter as he entered the building were shot and injured, AP reported.
A video shared on social media showed a crowd of distressed people outside the school arguing with armed police officers who seemed to have blocked access to the building with yellow tape.
At one point, one person can be heard shouting at police officers: “What are you doing? Get inside the building!”
It is unclear whether the video was shot during or after the shooting. Insider was unable to independently verify the video.
While he was in the classroom, police helped other students and teachers escape, officials said, per AP.
The gunman was killed at the scene by law enforcement around 40 minutes after he first entered the building, officials said, the AP reported.
Lt. Chris Olivarez of the Texas Department of Public Safety told CNN on Wednesday that the gunman had barricaded himself inside the classroom, which left officers at a disadvantage.
“There was not sufficient manpower at that time, and their primary focus was to preserve any further loss of life,” he told CNN.
US Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz defended police officers’ actions, also telling CNN that they “entered that classroom and they took care of the situation as quickly as they possibly could.”
The Uvalde Police Department did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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