State Sen. Roland Gutierrez introduces legislation to support Robb victims’ families

The legislation is designed to improve victims’ access to justice.

AUSTIN – It has been eight months since the Robb Elementary shooting on May 24, 2022, and there’s a renewed push for legislation.

Families of some of the victims drove to the state Capitol to stand with state Sen. Roland Gutierrez for Tuesday’s announcement.

The proposal is meant to help victims and survivors of gun violence and help the Uvalde families seek accountability.

“What we’re doing today — we’re going to talk about justice,” Gutierrez said.

Grieving families surrounded him and other senators who introduced four pieces of legislation.

  • Senate concurrent resolution 12, or SCR 12, would allow Robb victims’ families to sue the state.
  • SCR 11 asks the U.S. Congress to repeal PLCAA, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects gun manufacturers from being sued.
  • Senate Bill 574, or SB 574, would create the school violence victim’s compensation fund.
  • SB 575 would end qualified immunity for law enforcement.

“This state agency — the Department of Public Safety that failed these children for 77 minutes for lack of leadership. Under no circumstances should they be allowed to walk away and not compensate people,” Gutierrez said.

Felicha Martinez, the mother of Xavier Lopez, a Robb Elementary victim, said she backs SB 575. She said the law enforcement officers who failed her son should be held accountable.

“Because of that, my son’s not here. These other babies aren’t here, and two beautiful women are not here for their children,” Martinez said.

Marissa Lozano, the younger sister of Irma Garcia — one of the teachers killed in the shooting — also spoke.

“I wonder if it had been 21 abortions that were being performed in those classrooms if our elected officials would step in,” Lozano said.

She described her sister’s wounds, hoping it would appeal to legislatures to raise the age to buy assault weapons.

“She faced homegrown evil, and within seconds, he shot Irma 11 times from her head to her legs. She never stood a chance,” Lozano said.

Those pieces of legislation were just filed on Jan. 24. Next, they’ll go to a Texas Senate committee.

Gutierrez says he’ll host these press conferences weekly, joined by families of mass shooting victims in Texas.

Next week’s conference will be about appropriations, the week after that will be about emergency management and preparedness, and finally, gun safety solutions the following week.

Find more Uvalde coverage from KSAT here


About the Authors:

Leigh Waldman is a news reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.