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Fact Check-Contrary to social media posts, there is no evidence Uvalde shooter was part of a set-up or conspiracy and he had a job until shortly before the shooting

A video claiming that the equipment that was used by the perpetrator of the shooting rampage on Tuesday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, was unaffordable for the shooter, and that therefore the whole tragedy was a setup, is misleading. The shooter, Salvador Ramos, had been employed at a fast-food restaurant until about two weeks before the shootings and he had expressed intent to purchase weapons.

The video, versions of which have accumulated more than 294,000 likes on YouTube and 9,800 likes on Facebook, features a man in a US army Staff Sergeant uniform, while a message onscreen reads: “You can’t tell me that your good old government isn’t behind what’s going on with these incidents.”

Examples of the video can be seen (here) (here) and (here). Other posts questioned how the shooter could have afforded the weapons he used (here).

18-year-old Ramos shot his grandmother before heading to Robb Elementary School in southern Texas armed with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, killing 21 people and injuring at least 17 others (here).

According to police, Ramos had bought 1,657 rounds of ammunition and had 60 30-round magazines, enough for 1,800 bullets (here).

The Texas Tribune reporter Ramos legally bought two AR platform rifles in May (here).

The speaker in the video also says that the shooter had brought a handgun and ammo, as well as a plate carrier body armor with no plates inside, which is corroborated by reporting (here), (here).

The video claims the shooter was unemployed, but Ramos had been employed until shortly before the shooting.

Multiple outlets reported that Ramos had been working at a local Wendy’s drive-thru restaurant until about two weeks before the shooting, (here), (here) as well as doing some work for his grandfather (here).

The average Wendy's Crew Member wage in Texas is about $10.59, according to Indeed (here).

Disproving the unsupported claims that Ramos was somehow “sponsored” for his actions, he had expressed intent to save up and buy weapons in the past. The Daily Mail reported that Ramos would tell co-workers at Wendy’s that he was saving his money to buy guns and ammo (here). He also joked to a Wendy’s co-worker that he was going to shoot up their workplace, according to the New York Times (here).

Ramos’s past behavior has been described as disturbing in news reports, and he made past threats on social media (here), (here), (here), (here), (here).

VERDICT

No evidence. Contrary to online videos, there is no evidence the Uvalde shooter is part of a set-up or conspiracy. He had been employed until about two weeks before the rampage and allegedly expressed intent to save money to buy weapons to a coworker.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts here .

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