Salvador Ramos, the teenage gunman behind the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, may have been arrested four years ago for threatening to shoot up the Uvalde High School when he turned 18-years-old, according to Texas lawmaker.
Texas Representative Tony Gonzales, whose congressional district includes Uvalde, told Fox News that he found out on Thursday night that “the shooter was arrested years ago—four years ago—for having this plan for basically saying, for saying, you know, when I’m a senior in 2022, I am going to shoot up a school.”
Authorities say Ramos legally purchased two assault rifles and scores of ammo last week for his 18th birthday. On Tuesday, he walked through an unlocked back door of the school, and opened fire, slaughtering 19 children and two adults before being killed by police.
“Something fell between the cracks between then and now to allow this to happen. We need to shake out all the facts. We need to figure out what happened. Where the holes and we need to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” he said. “But if law enforcement, you know, identified him four years ago as a threat, we need to figure out why he wasn’t – you know, how he got removed from that.”
Gonzales later tweeted out a 2018 press release from the Uvalde Police Department alerting the public about “credible threats to a local school.”
“4 years ago Uvalde PD did their job and identified credible threats to a local school,” the Republican wrote in the tweet. “There are multiple agencies on the ground and I am getting updated information by the minute. We will continue to revise as we learn more.”
The press release read: “On April 19. 2018, the Uvalde Police Department received information regarding two male juveniles, age 13 & 14, planning to conduct a school shooting on their senior year (2022) at Uvalde Highschool. Due to the nature and severity of the threats, the Uvalde Police Department requested the assistance of the Texas Department of Public Safety (Texas Rangers Office).”
The alert went on to say that two arrests were made in connection with the threats on April 25, and the teens were put in a juvenile detention facility in Del Rio, Texas.
In a subsequent tweet, Gonzales noted that it was “unclear” whether one of the teens detained by police in 2018, was Ramos.
“It is now unclear if the shooter was one of the two kids detained,” he said. “If this was not the shooter, we need to find out who these kids are, where they are now, and if they were classmates of the shooter. There is a clear need for mental health resources in our community.”
It is now unclear if the shooter was one of the two kids detained.
If this was not the shooter, we need to find out who these kids are, where they are now, and if they were classmates of the shooter.
There is a clear need for mental health resources in our community.
— Rep. Tony Gonzales (@RepTonyGonzales) May 27, 2022
Local officials have said that Ramos had no criminal record as an adult but may have had a juvenile record, which are frequently unavailable to the public.