Extremists are praising the Uvalde school shooting online and encouraging 'copycat attacks,' feds warn

Extremists are praising the Uvalde school shooting online and encouraging 'copycat attacks,' feds warn
Law enforcement officials prepare for the arrival of President Joe Biden's attendance for mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church on May 29, 2022 in Uvalde, Texas.Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images
  • Homeland Security said extremists are praising the deadly May 24 mass shooting in Uvalde.
  • In a new terrorism bulletin, officials said the massacre has been used to encourage copycat attacks.

Extremists and conspiracy theorists are praising the deadly May 24 mass shooting at a Texas elementary school that left 21 people dead — and are encouraging others to shoot up schools in similar attacks — the Department of Homeland Security warned on Tuesday.

"Individuals in online forums that routinely promulgate domestic violent extremist and conspiracy theory-related content have praised the May 2022 mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas and encouraged copycat attacks," Homeland Security said in a new terrorism bulletin.

It continued: "Others have seized on the event to attempt to spread disinformation and incite grievances, including claims it was a government-staged event meant to advance gun control measures."

Nineteen children and two adults were killed when an 18-year-old gunman barged into two classrooms at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde and opened fire.

The massacre — the deadliest elementary school shooting since Sandy Hook in 2012 — has sparked renewed debate over gun control legislation as the US battles a recent surge in mass shootings and other violence.


Homeland Security warned that the "proliferation" of misinformation could combine with various factors to "inspire" violence, especially ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.

The department also said several attacks over the last few months have highlighted "the dynamic and complex nature" of the threats facing the US — which, officials say, is in a "heightened threat environment."

The department specifically cited shootings at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, and a church in Laguna Woods, California that authorities allege were fueled by racist hate, as well as a mass shooting on a New York City subway car.

To respond to the rise in violence, Homeland Security said it is working with the FBI "to share timely and actionable information and intelligence with the broadest audience possible."