Crime /

Uvalde School Shooter's Cousin Arrested for Allegedly Threatening to ‘Do the Same Thing’

Nathan James Cruz, 17, allegedly threatened to shoot his sister and 'shoot the school'

The teenage cousin of the gunman who killed 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas has reportedly been arrested for threatening to take similar actions.

Nathan James Cruz was arrested on a felony charge of making a terroristic threat to a public place and a misdemeanor charge of making a terroristic threat against a family member. Cruz is the 17-year-old cousin of Salvador Ramos who attacked Robb Elementary in May 2022 at the age of 18.

Cruz’s mother contacted authorities after her daughter told her he had expressed that he would “do the same thing” as his cousin, that “school is starting soon,” and that he would “shoot the school,” according to The New York Times. Both the mother and the daughter gave recorded statements to law enforcement. During her statement, Cruz’s sister said her brother threatened to shoot her in the head. Detectives determined the threat had enough to warrant Cruz’s arrest and brought him into custody on Aug. 7. 

The mother was reportedly specifically concerned because Cruz was “intoxicated” and the family lives near an elementary school. She also told police that she “overheard a phone conversation the suspect made this morning in which the suspect attempted to acquire an AR-15 through an illegal private sale.”

“She called the police because she was concerned of what her son was going to do,” Sergeant Washington Moscoso of the San Antonio Police Department told the publication. 

“God knows what could have happened,” he continued. “Because she did the right thing, this individual has been arrested.”

An investigation into the 2022 shooting involving Cruz’s cousin is ongoing, including specific efforts to determine why local law enforcement waited 73 minutes to enter the school, despite the arrival of hundreds of police and other law enforcement officers. The delay has been heavily criticized by state and national media. 

“Ramos stormed into Robb Elementary last year armed with an assault rifle and tactical vest and opened fire on two adjoining classrooms – perpetrating one of the deadliest school shootings in modern U.S. history,” reports KCRA

Multiple school staff members were suspended or placed on leave for failing to ensure certain safety protocols were in place. The Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Superintendent placed Robb Elementary School Principal Mandy Gutierrez on leave in July of 2022 because she knew the classroom where the students were murdered had an inoperable lock and did not ensure it was repaired. 

Ramos fired over 100 rounds during the course of the shooting. 

Cruz was taken to Bexar County Jail. The charges may result in up to a $160,000 bond.

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