Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steven McCraw did not mince words when he released a statement expressing his opposition to the release of security camera footage from Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, on the day a gunman came onto school grounds and killed students and adults.
McCraw said in a statement released on Tuesday, "I am deeply disappointed this video was released before all the families who were impacted that day and the community of Uvalde had the opportunity to view it as part of Charman Dustin Burrows' plan."
A previously put-together plan would have had the victims' families see the video before it was fully released to the public. The police department's delayed response in killing the gunman has been a major point of contention between law enforcement and the residents of Uvalde.
McCraw said, "This video provides horrifying evidence that the law enforcement response to the attack at Robb Elementary on May 24 was an abject failure."
The victims' family members expressed their outrage at the release of the video on Tuesday.
Angel Garza, a father, said, "Who in the hell do these people think they are? I don't care if you're you're a DA, you're a spokesperson, you're a councilman, you're a senator. Who do you think you are to release footage like that of our children who can't even speak for themselves, but you want to go ahead and air their final moments to the entire world? What makes you think that's okay? The least you can do is have some freaking decency for us. That is unacceptable."
Another father, Javier Casarez, said, "Another parent got a call saying that somebody got a hold of it, it got released and got leaked, and they didn't have our permission from it from us to do so. And it went on the air not too long ago, and, you know, they were supposed to do it with our consent; for one, they didn't have our consent. And, you know, we didn't want any audio, and these SOBs did it. It got leaked."
Casarez went on to say, "These families didn't deserve it. I don't deserve it. That's a slap to our babies' faces. And we're tired of this. You know, we can't trust anybody anymore. It's aggravating."
The video, released by the Austin American-Statesman on its website, is an edited video that lasts about 4 minutes long. It does not include much of what happened during the full incident which lasted around 77 minutes on May 24. The video has the voices of the children edited out along with many other details from those horrifying minutes that lasted over an hour.