14 students and a teacher are dead after shooting in an elementary school in Texas
AILSA CHANG, HOST:
There has been a shooting at an elementary school in Texas. It happened at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, about 85 miles west of San Antonio. Here's what we know so far. According to the governor of Texas, 14 children and a teacher are dead. More than a dozen other children have been injured. Governor Greg Abbott says the suspected gunman is dead.
Texas Public Radio's Brian Kirkpatrick is in Uvalde and joins us now. Hi, Brian.
BRIAN KIRKPATRICK, BYLINE: How are you?
CHANG: So I've mentioned just some of the details that we know so far. Can you add to them? What have you learned?
KIRKPATRICK: We understand, according to the governor's office, the gunman entered the school around 11:32 armed with possibly two weapons and opened fire. And as you reported earlier, 14 dead - rather 14 students dead and one teacher. They wrapped up a news conference here at the civic center in Uvalde but did not place actual numbers on dead or wounded. So we're still waiting for more information here at the civic center.
CHANG: And how much do we know about what kind of firearms were involved?
KIRKPATRICK: The governor's office apparently reported that he may have been armed with a rifle and a handgun. But again, the local investigators have been shying away from details. They would not take any questions after a news conference that wrapped up about 30 minutes ago. We're hoping to hear more again later this evening.
CHANG: OK. Well, Brian, what is the scene like where you are right now? Like, where exactly have you been in Uvalde?
KIRKPATRICK: Uvalde's a very small town, largely farming and ranching, a little more than an hour's drive west of San Antonio, very peaceful town. The scene is largely here at the civic center, where parents or loved ones have been coming and going, checking on the information about, you know, their loved ones through authorities here at the civic center - but have been quickly ushered away by law enforcement. So far, family members don't seem - you know, are obviously very distraught, and we haven't seen much comment right now.
CHANG: And can you tell us a little more about the town of Uvalde or the surrounding area - like, just give us a sense?
KIRKPATRICK: Well, yeah, Uvalde's one of those typical Texas towns that largely revolves around Friday night football. There's a lot of civic pride through your Friday night football games. And, you know, you'll see booster signs up in all the windows during the school year.
And these kind of towns are very close-knit because of that, and that includes their schools. They're a central part of the community. So when something happens to a school, it really affects everybody here because a lot of folks that grow up here, you know, live and die here. And, you know, so it's that kind of connected community.
KIRKPATRICK: It's also - anyway, that's - that hopefully gives you some idea.
CHANG: Well, as to the suspected gunman, who we are told is now dead, do we know anything about him? We are hearing that he was 18 years old. Do we know anything about a possible motive?
KIRKPATRICK: We do not. We just know that he's 18 and here from Uvalde. We're, again, still waiting on more information. There's a lot of law enforcement here at the civic center, a lot of family members, a lot of community members. The county judge showed up here, Bill Mitchell, and he has been greeting people as they come to the civic center and offering his condolences.
CHANG: Yeah. Well, I can imagine. So how have local and other state officials been responding? Can you give us an idea?
KIRKPATRICK: You know, I have been nonstop since this happened, and I've been going between the school and the civic center. But I believe a lot of state officials, local officials, you know, are already expressing, you know, their condolences and dismay, you know, that yet another one of these shootings has happened in this country.
CHANG: It never seems to end. Well, as we've been told by the governor's office, 14 children and one teacher are now dead. But those who are injured, do you know anything about what condition they are in at the moment? What do we know?
KIRKPATRICK: We understand they went to medical facilities here in Uvalde and also into San Antonio. In fact, driving out here, I had several ambulances passing by me going back toward San Antonio as I was coming into Uvalde. But as far as conditions, no, we're not hearing anything on that either.
CHANG: OK. That is Brian Kirkpatrick with Texas Public Radio reporting from Uvalde with the latest details about the shooting that has left at least 14 children and one teacher dead. Thank you very much, Brian.
We are going to be staying with this story throughout the evening. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.