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The Uvalde Hand Sanitizer Cop Was Previously Awarded Bronze Star For Valor and Bravery

AP Photo/Dario Lopez-Mills

The Uvalde cop who casually stopped to use hand sanitizer while children were being murdered at Robb Elementary School has been identified. 

In a video released last week of the surveillance footage inside the school that day, officers are seen standing around as the gunman carries on with his rampage down the hall. One officer checked his phone and another—Uvalde County Sheriff's Deputy Eric Gonzales, 30—walked over to a wall-mounted dispenser to use hand sanitizer, prompting widespread outrage.


“Would love to hear from this Uvalde cop why he was worried about putting on hand sanitizer while a shooter was massacring kids twenty feet down the hall,” tweeted The Daily Wire's Cabot Phillips.

According to the Daily Mail, which first reported the officer’s identification, it was just two years ago in December of 2020 that Gonzales received a bronze star for valor and bravery after exchanging fire with a suspect. He reportedly “displayed exemplary conduct and took care of the lives of others.”

His boss claimed Gonzales used the hand sanitizer because he was about to assist the medics and had no gloves, though no medics could be seen on the footage and the officer then put his hand up against the wall defeating the purpose.

While pundits and social media users were quick to criticize the officers who stood around that day, Uvalde residents are demanding consequences. 


"All of the police were a bunch of cowards that day," Ruben Mata, whose great granddaughter was killed in the shooting, told the Daily Mail. "They should be fired and prosecuted. A lot of people around here are sickened by the video released and are mad. It's a small town and they don't want to be too vocal about it for fear of retaliation by the police."

A damning 77-page report from a special Texas House panel on the mass shooting cited "multiple systemic failures" and said the officers in the hall that day "should have known there was dying in that classroom, and they should have done more, acted with urgency."

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