Texas shooter Salvador Ramos was armed with up to 660 bullets

Gunman may have brought total of 660 bullets to Texas school

Josh Marcus
San Francisco
Friday 27 May 2022 12:54
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The gunman who killed 19 students and two teachers at a Texas elementary school on Tuesday may have been armed with as many as 660 rounds packed into high-capacity ammunition magazines during the massacre, ABC News reports.

Salvador Ramos had one 30-round magazine loaded into the AR-15-style assault rifle he used during the shooting, law enforcement sources said.

The 18-year-old had another six magazines loaded into a tactical vest he was wearing, as well as 15 more loaded magazines in a backpack later discovered by police.

All told, Ramos may have brought as many as 660 bullets to Robb Elementary School.

It’s the latest sign that Ramos was able to obtain a military-grade arsenal of guns without alerting law enforcement.

Shortly after turning 18 on 16 May, the teen quickly set about buying up firearms and accessories.

The following day, he went to a local gun store and bought a semiautomatic rifle.

The next day, he purchased at least 375 rounds of ammunition.

On 19 May, he returned to the gun store and bought another AR-15-style rifle.

All of this was legal under state law in Texas, which has some of the loosest gun laws in the country.

18-year-olds can buy and carry long guns or rifles.

In 2021, Governor Greg Abbott signed laws allowing Texans to carry guns and rifles without permits.

The govenor has defended his record on guns, saying mental health issues lead to mass shootings, not access to high-powered weapons.

“The ability of an 18-year-old to buy a long gun has been in place in the state of Texas for more than 60 years, and think about during the time over the course of that 60 years, we have not had episodes like this,” he said at a news conference on Wednesday.

“One thing that has substantially changed,” he continued, “is the status of mental health in our communities. What I do know is this: we as a state, we as a society, need to do a better job with mental health. Anybody who shoots somebody else has a mental health challenge, period.”

Gun homicides in Texas have increased more than 90 per cent in the state in the last decade, and have been rising almost every year since 2011, according to the Giffords Law Center.

Two of the four deadliest school shootings in the last decade also took place in Texas, as have a number of other shocking mass killings in recent years, including massacres at a military base in Fort Hood, a church in Sutherland Springs, and a Walmart in El Paso.

Many of those shootings, as with the one in Uvalde, involved the use of an AR-15-style rifle, a semiautomatic gun modeled on the ones US troops used in Vietnam.

An AR-15-style gun was used in a 2017’s mass shooting a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, which killed 26.

In 1994, President Bill Clinton signed an assault weapons ban until law, which covered the AR-15.

In the decade that followed the law, mass shootings were down compared to the years before its passage and after its expiration.

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