Funeral home worker claims police STOPPED him from saving kids during Texas school shooting and reveals he tried to help gunman out of car crash until he spotted rifle and his ‘evil look’
- Cody Briseno said he and a co-worker were about eight to 10 feet from where 18-year-old Salvador Ramos crashed his pick-up truck in a ditch
- Initially, he said, he offered to help the teenager, but when he saw that Ramos had an AR-15 and was heading toward the school, he decided to run over
- As he ran, he said, a cop a cop asked him where he was going, and he said he was going in to ‘stop’ Ramos, who had entered the school from an unlocked door
- The cop then reportedly told him to stay back and shut up
- Ever since, Briseno says he has felt guilty as he had to bury the 19 children and two teachers at his funeral home
- The Texas Department of Public Safety is now investigating the police response to the shooting on May 24
An Uvalde funeral worker rushed toward Robb Elementary School after seeing a gunman enter the building – but said cops prevented him from interfering.
Cody Briseno said he and a co-worker were about eight to 10 feet away from where 18-year-old Salvador Ramos crashed his pick-up truck in a ditch on May 24, and he initially sought to offer the teenager help.
But as he realized Ramos had an AR-15 rifle and had an ‘evil look’ while walking towards the elementary school, Briseno said he decided to run over – watching Ramos enter the building through an unlocked door.
As he ran over to the school, though, Briseno said, a cop asked him where he was going.
‘I’m going in and try to stop them,’ Briseno remembers telling the officer. ‘I told him that [Ramos is] already inside the school.’
But the cop told him to stay back and shut up, NBC News reports.
Briseno did not specify which department the officer worked for.
Cody Briseno said he tried to run toward Robb Elementary School after he saw 18-year-old Salvador Ramos go inside with an AR-15 but was stopped by an unnamed police officer
Briseno said he and a coworker saw Ramos crash his pick-up truck into a ditch outside of the school and initially offered to help the teen
He has since had to bury some of the 19 children and two adults who died in the massacre, as an employee of Hillcrest Memorial Funeral Home
Briseno said he and a coworker were outside when they saw Ramos crash a black pick-up truck that morning.
‘I see him crawling out the passenger window,’ Briseno recounted to NBC News. ‘I tell him, “Hey man, are you OK? Are you alright?”‘
Salvador Ramos, 18, (pictured) stormed Robb Elementary School on May 24 and was inside the school building for 77 minutes before police reached the locked door with a key and killed him
But as he was offering help, Briseno said, Ramos turned back to his truck, from where he pulled out an AR-15 assault rifle.
‘At that moment, he looks back at me with this evil look, and I see that rifle,’ Briseno said, adding that he then warned his co-worker that Ramos has a gun.
They both took off running, when Briseno fell and saw Ramos attaching a magazine to his rifle, he said.
‘He was shooting at both of us,’ Briseno said. ‘ I could just hear ricochet.
‘He was aiming that barrel right at me and my coworker.’
At that point, Briseno said he called his wife to bring him his own gun as he charged toward Robb Elementary School, where he was eventually stopped.
Ever since, Briseno said, he has felt guilty as he has had to bury some of the 19 children and two teachers at Hillcrest Funeral Home – which is directly across the street from Robb Elementary School.
‘My intention was to stop him, and I feel guilty, man, because I couldn’t stop him,’ he told NBC News.
‘It always plays in my head,’ Briseno said, when ‘I loaded those caskets down.’
The astonishing details come as the Texas Department of Public Safety continues to investigate the Uvalde Police Department’s response to the devastating school shooting.
Authorities say Ramos was inside the building for well over an hour before heroic Border Patrol agents reached the door with a key and killed him.
Steven McCraw, head of the Texas Department of Public Safety, said in the aftermath that school police chief Pete Arredondo – who was the acting incident commander during the massacre – declined to send cops into the building at the time because he believed the shooting had turned into a hostage situation.
McCraw admitted during a press briefing last Friday that waiting to take Ramos down ‘was the wrong decision.’
State Senator Roland Gutierrez, who has publicly criticized law enforcement’s response to the mass shooting, also revealed on Thursday that Arredondo was not carrying a radio during the shooting and was never informed that children had been calling 911 from inside the building.
‘Uvalde PD was the one receiving the 911 calls for 45 minutes while officers were sitting in a hallway, while 19 officers were sitting in a hallway for 45 minutes,’ Gutierrez said during Thursday’s press briefing.
The legislator said the fact that the calls were going to the city police but were not communicated to Arredondo was a ‘system failure’ and claimed the school police chief was not given all the necessary information when he opted against an immediate confrontation with Ramos.
Authorities have not yet disclosed how Arredondo, a Uvalde local, was communicating with other law enforcement officials at the scene.
Authorities say school police chief Pete Arredondo (pictured) declined to send cops into the building at the time because he believed the shooting had turned into a hostage situation
Cops waited outside the school for a total of 77 minutes as Ramos continued shooting. Officers are seen here investigating the scene following the mass shooting
The Uvalde school board announced at its meeting on Friday it would not fire Arredondo
Still, the Uvalde Independent School District declined to fire Arredondo at its board meeting on Friday – the first since the massacre.
Superintendent Hal Harrell told meeting attendees he was ‘eager’ for the several investigations launched into law enforcement’s response to the shooting to ‘run their course,’ The Texas Tribune reported.
Harrell’s remark implied the school could still take disciplinary action against Arredondo, who has been considered a cowardice ‘man in hiding,’ pending the results of the investigations.
He also told concerned parents that students would ‘never’ return to the Texas elementary school.
Parents who tried to rush into the school to rescue their kids have also expressed outrage over being handcuffed and restrained outside while police let Ramos continue to evoke terror inside the building.
The board is scheduled to meet again on June 20. Parents are hopeful the next meeting will better address their concerns.
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