The gunmen who killed 19 children and two teachers at a school in Texas, US has been branded the “devil” after his rampage.
As America comes to terms with yet another mass shooting – the 213th this year and the 27th in a school, according to Education Week in the US.– the people of Uvalde, Texas , are preparing to bury children and teachers.
One local, speaking on Uvalde's radio station, said: "The Devil came into school yesterday and committed this atrocity.
"Summer was almost here but the Devil looked these kids in the eye and said, 'You're gonna die'."
Investigators have been working through the night to positively identify the bodies of the children killed by teenage gunman. Salvador Ramos . With young bodies torn apart by the 45-round-per-minute AR-15 assault rifle, it's no easy task.
The AR-15 has a high muzzle velocity, which, combined with its small .223 round, will result in a massively destructive ricochet through a body if it strikes bone.
Families were asked to provide DNA samples to help confirm the identification, and the screams and cries of bereaved parents could be heard outside Uvalde's civic centre, where the surviving children had been taken to be reunited with their families.
One of the parents, Angel Garza, had waited several ours for news of his 10-year-old daughter Amerie Jo.
"Thank you everyone for the prayers and help trying to find my baby," he wrote on Facebook. "She's been found. My little love is now flying high with the angels above" he announced on Facebook yesterday.
Amerie’s gran Berlinda said: “He told the children, ‘You’re going to die.’ .’ Amerie had her phone and she called 911. He shot her.”
As well as the 19 kids and two teachers killed during the attack, more than a dozen children were injured and police warn that the death toll may rise.
Felicha Martinez, the mother of Amerie Jo's classmate Xavier Lopez told The Washington Post that her son had received a certificate for academic achievement just hours before the shooting.
She said she had taken a photo of him before telling him she was proud and that she loved him, not realising that they were the last words she would ever say to him.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said Ramos, who had shot his grandmother in the face before his murder rampage through Robb Elementary School, was ‘the sheer face of evil’
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Despite calls for limits on gun ownership in America, the politically powerful National Rifle Association [NRA] has always managed to block gun control legislation.
Instead of banning guns, some right wing commentators say, US schools should provide pupils with bulletproof blankets.
"Instead of parents buying their kids all these tools and toys and games, invest in the classroom to make it safer," former FBI agent Maureen O'Connell told Fox News, adding, "… they have blankets that you can put up on the wall that are colourful and beautiful—but they're ballistic blankets."
One of the few places in the United States where guns aren't allowed is at Friday’s NRA Annual Leadership Forum, where ex-president Donald Trump is guest speaker.
The US Secret Service will be locking down Houston's George R. Brown Convention Centre during Trump’s speech and has banned attendees from carrying any firearms or knives.
Ammunition, laser pointers, pepper spray, toy guns and backpacks are also prohibited.
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