The mother of a student killed in the Uvalde school shooting has said her surviving daughter was dress-coded.
Kimberly Mata-Rubio called on the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District to reassess its priorities five months after the massacre at Robb Elementary School, where 19 students and two teachers were killed. Ms Mata-Rubio and her husband lost their 10-year-old daughter, Lexi, in the attack.
In a 26 October tweet, Ms Mata-Rubio said she received a message from a school official asking her to bring leggings for her surviving daughter, who also attends school in the district, because cuts in her jeans were “a little too high-up,” PEOPLE first reported.
“One thing we’re not going to do is dress code my 11-year-old for some ripped jeans,” Ms Mata-Rubio wrote. “UCISD, focus on school security. Maybe, if you had, my daughter, her little sister would still be alive.”
UCISD has been under severe scrutiny after suspending its entire police department following criticism of their response to the 24 May shooting.
Crimson Elizondo, a state trooper who responded to the attack and said, “If my son had been in there, I would not have been outside,” was later hired by the school district amid a probe by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Ms Elizondo was fired by the district after CNN reported on her remarks, which were caught on bodycam footage, as she stood outside of the school during the tragedy. Two other school police officials were placed on administrative leave for knowingly hiring Ms Elizondo despite the ongoing investigation.
Nearly 380 law enforcement officials responded to the massacre but it was 77 minutes into the violence that they stopped and killed shooter Salvador Ramos, 18. By then, 21 people had already been killed and 17 others had been injured.
Outside the school, desperate parents clashed with authorities as they begged police to interfere and at times tried to go inside the building to save their children. Inside a classroom, children repeatedly called 911 and pleaded for help.
One thing we’re not going to do is dress code my 11-year-old for some ripped jeans. UCISD, focus on school security. Maybe, if you had, my daughter, her little sister would still be alive. pic.twitter.com/nxR1OqY0sO
— Kimberly Mata-Rubio (@kimrubio21) October 26, 2022
Khloie Torres, who survived the shooting, was one of the students who made more than one call. Her pleas for help to police dispatchers were made 30 minutes after the gunman got into the school, and 40 minutes before he was shot and killed by law enforcement.
“I’m in classroom 112,” the little girl can be heard telling the police dispatcher at 12.10pm in tapes obtained by CNN and published with the approval of Khloie’s family. “Please hurry. There [are] a lot of dead bodies ... Please get help. I don’t wanna die. My teacher is dead. Oh, my God.”
Several minutes later she can be heard on another call begging for assistance.
“I need help … please. Have y’all captured the person?” she asked at 12.12pm, and a few minutes after that she asked, “You want me to open the door now?”
Khloie’s father, former Marine Ruben Torres, praised his daughter’s actions in the midst of the unbearable violence that had unfolded around her.
“That day, the things that she did were absolutely incredible,” he said, comparing it to the actions of the adults and professionals on scene. “None of them had courage that day.”
In October, the district announced that the decision had been made “to suspend all activities of the Uvalde CISD Police Department for a period of time.”
Texas Department of Public Safety troopers will provide assistance on campus and during extra-curricular hours.
“The District remains committed to resolving issues with verifiable evidence,” UCISD said in a statement, per KSAT. “Decisions concerning the UCISD police department have been pending the results of the Texas Police Chiefs Association and JPPI investigation. Recent developments have uncovered additional concerns with department operations.
“As a result of the recent developments, Lt. Miguel Hernandez and Ken Mueller have been placed on administrative leave, and the District has made the decision to suspend all activities of the Uvalde CISD Police Department for a period of time.”