"...but he was able to make entry into the school where he did go into several classrooms and unfortunately, he did fire his firearm."
Texas police had a shootout with the Uvalde gunman before he entered Robb Elementary School — but were not able to stop him.
Sgt. Erick Estrada of the Texas Department of Public Safety told Anderson Cooper on Tuesday night that "several" officers engaged with the shooter, who we are not naming, outside the school premises, yet he still made entry and massacred 19.
Sgt. Estrada said there were two separate incidents: the first occurred at the suspect's grandmother's house after he shot her, before she was airlifted to hospital.
"And the second incident that came in, was actually involving – they called it an epic crash, and a man with a firearm outside the school premises."
"There was several law enforcement that engaged the suspect, but he was able to make entry into the school where he did go into several classrooms and unfortunately, he did fire his firearm inside the school premises."
"But then he was met with another tactical law enforcement agency which ultimately were able to bring him down… Unfortunately, there is confirmation right now that there is 18 deceased children – or students – and there's two deceased adults."
The sergeant said there was nothing about a police pursuit in the logs; however he said a 911 call reported he had crashed his car at a ditch near the school, and had been been seen exiting the vehicle with a gun — and that's when officers engaged.
"That's where he exited his vehicle with, I believe it was a rifle and that's when he attempted to enter the school where he was engaged by law enforcement," he said.
"And unfortunately he was able to enter the premises and then from there, that's when he went on, entered several classrooms and started shooting his firearm."
Cooper asked if officers were aware he was trying to enter the school.
"So what got reported was a call of a man with a gun that had crashed nearby the Robb Elementary School. And then he was observed exiting the vehicle with a long rifle and a backpack," he said.
"He also had body armor with him. That's whenever the, I believe ISD (Independent School District) police officers engaged him. Then, there was a second call where he entered through the south door of the Robb Elementary School. He entered and that's when he started with his gunfire inside the premises."
ISD officers, he explained, are those who are already stationed at the school, to protect it.