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Teenage cousin of Uvalde school shooter is arrested, accused of threatening to ‘do the same thing’ to a school

By Ed Lavandera and Joe Sutton, CNN

(CNN) — The teenage cousin of the gunman responsible for the 2022 Uvalde, Texas, school shooting was arrested Monday on suspicion of threatening to “do the same thing” to a school, according to court documents obtained by CNN.

Nathan James Cruz, 17, 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, according to Bexar County Central Magistrate records.

Cruz is the cousin of Salvador Ramos, the 18-year-old who fatally shot 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in May 2022, San Antonio police Sgt. Washington Moscoso told the New York Times on Monday.

CNN has sought comment from San Antonio police.

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 US history. Law enforcement’s response has been heavily scrutinized, as officers waited outside the classrooms for more than an hour before entering and fatally shooting Ramos.

Cruz’s mother contacted police on Monday after her daughter reported that Cruz said he planned to “do the same thing” as his cousin, according to an affidavit obtained by CNN.

His mother told investigators she was “especially concerned because the suspect is currently on probation, was intoxicated at the time” and because the family lives across the street from an elementary school, the affidavit states.

Cruz’s sister told investigators that while she was giving her brother a ride, he “threatened to shoot her in the head and stated he would ‘shoot the school,’” according to the affidavit.

The mother allegedly overheard a phone conversation in which Cruz was attempting to illegally acquire an AR-15-style assault rifle – the same style used by Ramos to carry out the Uvalde shooting, according to the affidavit.

Following his arrest, Cruz “denied making any threats” when interviewed by a detective, the document states.

CNN has been unable to confirm whether Cruz has an attorney. His charges carry a combined $160,000 bond, according to the magistrate records.

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CNN’s Elizabeth Wolfe contributed to this report.

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