A picture of the days leading up to Salvador Ramos’ Texas elementary school massacre is beginning to emerge, starting with a birthday dinner at Applebee’s and ending with the brutal deaths of 19 children and two teachers.
On May 16, Salvador Ramos was sitting in Applebee’s with his grandmother, Celia Martinez Gonzales, celebrating his 18th birthday, the New York Post reported.
The following day, according to Texas Department of Public Safety Steve McCraw, the high school dropout went to Oasis Outback, a local sporting goods store, intent on buying a “semiautomatic rifle.” The following day, Ramos returned to the Oasis for 375 rounds of ammunition, and two days later, he went in to pick up a Daniel Defense AR-style rifle.
The Instagram page @Salv8dor_ tagged a woman who says she did not know him, writing, ‘I Got Lil Secret’. The Los Angeles teen posted messages from Ramos stating, "I don’t know him and I don’t even live in Texas,” she wrote in her story. “He’s a stranger. I know nothing about him. pic.twitter.com/lcsLpXOUkG
— Conspiratorial Report (@CnsprtrlRprt) May 25, 2022
In an interview with CNN following the mass shooting, Texas state Senator Ronald Gutierrez said, “It’s the first thing he did when he turned 18.”
Citing a briefing from the Texas Rangers, Gutierrez said Ramos “had no problem accessing those weapons.”
It’s an interesting point. While Ramos reportedly had no history of mental health issues and no criminal rap sheet, the weapons and accessories the teenager bought were not cheap, and Ramos was not from a well-to-do family.
According to ABC News, the guns Ramos bought retail for nearly $2,000, and if Ramos’ social media posts are to be believed, he also purchased a battery-powered holographic sight, which would typically set the teen back another $725.
As previously reported, the shooting sparked immediate calls from Democrats for stricter gun laws, but it is unclear whether or not more restrictions would have prevented the tragedy. While Ramos could have legally purchased the rifle under Texas law, he was also seen wielding a handgun prior to entering Robb Elementary School.
Ramos violated Texas law when he committed a weapons crime within 300 feet of the school, and it is illegal for an 18-year-old to buy or carry a handgun, according to former National Rifle Association spokesperson Dana Loesch.
Texas shooter violated a multiplicity of gun laws – ‘morally reprehensible’ to say more would help https://t.co/3QSeaWmNvX
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) May 25, 2022
After making his birthday purchases, Ramos took to social media.
In a private Instagram message just hours before the shooting to a woman who claims she doesn’t even know the troubled teen, Ramos reportedly said, “I got a lil secret I wanna tell u.” A smiling emoji, covering its mouth, accompanied the cryptic post.
A half-hour before shots rang out, Ramos posted on Facebook.
“The first post… said, ‘I’m going to shoot my grandmother,'” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said at a Wednesday press conference. “The second post was, ‘I shot my grandmother.'”
Just one week after toasting her grandson on his birthday, Gonzales was sot in the face by Ramos.
According to McCraw, Gonzales “was able to run across the street to a neighbor and get help.”
Fifteen minutes before the shooting, Ramos once again posted on Facebook in a private message.
“The third post, maybe less than 15 minutes before arriving at the school was, ‘I’m going to shoot an elementary school,” Abbott said.
At approximately 11:30 a.m., Ramos stole his grandmother’s truck. Driving without a license, Ramos made it less than half-a-mile before crashing it in a ditch near the school.
Said McCraw, Ramos grabbed his backpack and one of the rifles he purchased and ran towards the school. He had donned a tactical vest, but reportedly did not use the body-armor plates.
At a back door to the school, Ramos was confronted by a school resource officer who “immediately” followed the demented teen into the school.
Gunfire was exchanged and Ramos barricaded himself in a class of fourth-grade students, “and that’s when the carnage began,” McCraw said.
SWAT and Border Patrol agents descended on the school, eventually shooting Ramos dead.
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