BOSTON -- At least 19 students and two teacherswhen a gunman opened fire at an elementary school in Texas. The shooting took place at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, which is approximately an hour and a half west of San Antonio.
WBZ-TV security analyst and former Boston police commissioner Ed Davis spoke with Lisa Hughes and David Wade about the next step for authorities, how these tragedies can be prevented, and more.
Lisa Hughes: It breaks our hearts that we're talking about this again. What is happening right now in Texas in Uvalde, where police are saying they believe there was one shooter in the school?
Ed Davis: This was a terrible tragedy, and small children like this being murdered, so senselessly. it's just hard to comprehend. The police are there, they've secured the scene, they are processing physical evidence from that scene. There's also a lot of work being done in the background.
I think what's important to understand is when something like this happens, police descend upon the residence of the individual involved and secure that residence. So they will remove everybody from the house. And then they will obtain a search warrant, and they will go through every inch of that house. They will find any computers or telephones or other devices that everyone in the house uses, and they will start to exploit the information that's on those to try to determine exactly what this individual was thinking before he committed this heinous attack.
Everything is being locked down and secured right now. It will take hours to get the appropriate paperwork in place, but I can tell you that everybody is concentrating on this individual. They will drill down into his background, they will exploit all of the social media that's out there, they will speak to everybody who ever went to school with him or who knew him, anybody who has had any contact with him in the past, and then there's the firearms. ATF will be the point on the firearms. They will get the serial numbers off the firearms. They will find out what lot the ammunition came from. And they will very quickly find out exactly how this individual came to be in possession of such deadly weaponry and use it for murdering these children.
David Wade: Obviously, as you mentioned, the FBI involved, they'll look into the background. Just a week ago, we were talking about-- the shooting at the supermarket there. We start to learn about his social media activity in the background.
Not to be cynical, but one part of the solution is that we're learning about some of these deep and disgusting thoughts of the shooters, but is that doing anything to actually help the solution for the future? Learning what their thinking and their demented thoughts? What does that do for us?
Ed Davis: Well, it does nothing right now because of the logjam that is occurring in Congress.
But we've seen in other countries like in New Zealand, that when something outrageous like this happens, you can move very quickly. And cynicism is a really good reaction right now because we keep seeing this happening over and over and over again, and nobody is willing to move off their position. And it's reprehensible. There should be review of these social media sites for this type of language, and there should be an immediate response.
Let's not be hiding behind the First Amendment here. When you talk about wanting to kill people, or you have homicidal or suicidal ideation, intervention needs to happen immediately. And we're not doing that right now.
There is no reason why we cannot have a database of people who have either been violent or have talked about being violent, and then remove their guns from them and not allow them to buy guns. The only thing that's stopping that is inactivity and a lack of support in Washington. And it's just incomprehensible to me.
Lisa Hughes: Texas is a state in which many people own guns. Gun ownership is celebrated. How much more difficult will it be, if not to do the investigation there, to raise these issues in that state?
Ed Davis: There's definitely a gun culture there, unlike anyplace else in the country. You know, the cowboy mentality is there. I don't think anybody's talking about removing guns that are lawfully owned by people that are stable. But there's no reason why we cannot put common sense restrictions in place so that people who are not stable people, who are making statements like this, can't get their hands on military weapons, and do what we saw in Buffalo just recently, or what we're seeing today in Uvalde.
I mean the amount of firepower that's out there...you know, people say, 'Well, let's train everybody, let's tell them about run, hide, fight.' The truth of the matter is the first six people killed in Buffalo didn't even know they were being shot. They were dead before they could hear the gunfire. That's how quickly these things happen.
And so, if you look at these things, you see the video of how it happened, you realize that the only solution here is prevention. It's not response. If there was a SWAT team standing there at the Buffalo supermarket, several of them would have been cut down by this guy before they could respond. It's just devastating firepower that's military in nature that cannot be countered.
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