Uvalde Survivors File $27 Billion Lawsuit Against Texas Officials, Officers Over Response to Mass Shooting

Katabella Roberts
By Katabella Roberts
December 2, 2022US News
Uvalde Survivors File $27 Billion Lawsuit Against Texas Officials, Officers Over Response to Mass Shooting
Wooden crosses are placed at a memorial dedicated to the victims of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on June 3, 2022. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Survivors of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, have filed a $27 billion class-action lawsuit against multiple law enforcement officials in the state.

This comes six months after the killings, which were the deadliest U.S. school shooting in almost a decade. Nineteen children and two teachers we killed by the gunman in May.

The lawsuit was filed on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. It names the city of Uvalde, its police department, the school district, the state Department of Public Safety, and several police and school officials as defendants.

The plaintiffs, which include parents, teachers, and staff members, are alleging that the officials failed to follow protocols for an active shooter, despite having received active shooter training and that they did not neutralize the shooter immediately, leading to further trauma and injuries.

“Law enforcement took seventy-seven minutes to accomplish what they were duty bound to expeditiously perform,” the lawsuit states.

“Not only had CISD-PD undertaken a state-sponsored and mandated active shooter response training, but CISD had additionally promulgated its own required protocols and standards to employ in the event of an active shooter on one of its campuses.

“Despite such preparedness, the CISD  police department, along with similarly trained law enforcement agencies including the City of Uvalde’s police department, the Texas Department of Public Safety, San Antonio Police Department’s SWAT unit, Uvalde’s Sheriff’s office, and the United States Department of Homeland Security fundamentally strayed from conducting themselves in conformity with what they knew to be the well-established protocols and standards for responding to an active shooter,” the lawsuit added.

In this still from surveillance video, authorities respond to the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on May 24, 2022. (Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

Officers Waited Over an Hour

Nearly 400 law enforcement officials arrived at the school on May 24 but opted to wait over 70 minutes to enter the fourth-grade classroom where gunman Salvador Ramos had locked himself in and take him down.

77-page report published in July by the Texas state House of Representatives found that there were multiple “shortcomings and failures” across the board by both law enforcement and UCISD in its response.

Plaintiffs are seeking damages for the survivors of the shooting, including parents whose children were killed and those who witnessed the deadly incident.

According to the lawsuit, plaintiffs “sustained emotional and psychological damages as a result of Defendants’ conduct” on the day of the shooting, while some of the children are suffering from severe anxiety and nightmares.

A string of lawsuits have been filed against the Uvalde school district and law enforcement officers since May.

Texas School Shooting Lawsuit
Sandra Torres holds a photo of her daughter Eliahna at her attorney’s office in San Antonio on Nov. 28, 2022. (Eric Gay/AP Photo)

Mother of Victim, 10, Files Lawsuit

Earlier this week, Sandra Torres, the mother of 10-year-old victim Eliahna sued over the response to the shooting.

The lawsuit names the city of Uvalde; the County of Uvalde; the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District; the Uvalde Police Department; Uvalde CISD Police; Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office; Uvalde Constables, and the Texas Department of Public Safety as defendants.

It also names Daniel Defense, the manufacturer of the weapon used in the shooting, and Oasis Outback, a store where the firearm that was used in the shooting was purchased.

Lawyers for Torres allege that the actions of law enforcement officers on the day of the shooting resulted in prolonged suffering for the victims.

The Epoch Times has contacted the defendants listed in the lawsuit for comment.

“There are no words to adequately express our deepest condolences to all the families who lost a loved one on May 24,” Anne Marie Espinoza, a spokesperson for the school district, said in a statement to CNN after the latest $27 billion lawsuit was filed.

“Uvalde CISD cannot comment on or provide information about pending litigation. As a district, we focus on supporting our students and their families as we continue to navigate these unprecedented times.”

From The Epoch Times

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