As relatives in Uvalde begin funerals for their children and family members, anger at the police grows. The debate about gun violence in the USA has flared up again.
A week after the massacre at an elementary school in the community of Uvalde, Texas, the first of 21 victims has been buried.
The Texas Tribune newspaper reported that Amerie Jo Garza was buried on Tuesday afternoon (local time) – three weeks after her tenth birthday. The funeral ceremonies would last for two weeks. According to media reports, a second funeral should take place in the evening.
The 18-year-old attacker killed 19 children and two teachers on Tuesday last week before being shot dead by police himself. The gunman had holed himself up with an assault rifle in a fourth-grade classroom at Robb Elementary School. Nothing is known about his motive.
Police under public pressure
Since the operation, the police have been heavily criticized for their late intervention. More than 75 minutes after the shooter opened fire, emergency services entered the classroom and killed the gunman. The US Department of Justice has announced an investigation.
Last Sunday, US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visited the small community of Uvalde. They spent several hours with relatives of the victims and survivors of the killing spree.
The Uvalde killing spree has fueled the debate about tightening gun laws in the United States. Democrat Biden has spoken out in favor of it. For years, however, many Republicans have opposed stricter regulations, such as a ban on assault rifles. The US has long struggled with massive levels of gun violence. In 2020, gun injuries were the number one killer of children and adolescents in the United States, ahead of traffic accidents.