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Sister of Uvalde shooting victim testifies before Texas lawmakers: ‘I’m terrified to go back’ to school

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With her voice shaking as she delivered testimony to lawmakers, Jazmin Cazares, the sister of Jackie Cazares, who was slain during a mass shooting last month at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, called for tighter background checks, red flag laws and for lawmakers to “do something” to prevent future mass shootings.

“This morning around 5:30 a.m. I sat on my sister’s bed and I cried, I cried and I cried,” she said. “[Then] I wiped my tears, got in my car and drove four hours to get here. I shouldn’t have to be here right now. I should be at home watching a movie with my sister — it’s summer.”

Cazares said told lawmakers she was testifying in honor of her sister Jackie and her cousin Annabell Rodriguez, who was also killed by a gunman who took the lives of 19 children and two teachers. She called Jackie “one of the sweetest souls anyone will ever meet” and said her family was still in shock as they continue to learn details of the shooting, saying there are signs the gunman could have been stopped before he committed the massacre at the school.

“I’m here begging for you guys to do something,” Cazares said. “I’m here to honor Jackie, her friends, their families, my family and my community. You can honor them, too, by passing gun safety legislation.”

Cazares said she has one year left of high school but she is unsure whether she’ll return to school next year.

“I’m terrified for my life to go back,” she said. “I have senior year and that’s it. Am I going to survive it? It’s unbelievable. Absolutely unbelievable.”

Cazares said lawmakers should come together to pass red flag laws, which would allow local officials to take someone’s guns away if a judge declares them to be a danger, and said they could save lives. She also called for stricter background checks for gun sales.

“Background checks are needed to protect innocent communities like mine from being in danger by people who are unstable and signal that they are threats,” she said.

“Background checks are needed to protect innocent communities like mine from being in danger by people who are unstable and signal that they are threats,” she said.

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Sourabh Verma franklin
Sourabh Verma,From Franklin Tn - Sub-editor in Asian News International(ANI) I am a detailed-driven journalist with 3+ years of experience in news writing and copy-editing, I can file quick, compelling and error-free stories as they break. I have sound knowledge of national and international issues and have covered stories across beats, including politics, parliament, legal and crime like drugs and Human Trafficking at Asian News International (ANI), where I currently work. Some of these include extensive coverage of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, several state Assembly elections, Parliament sessions, COVID-19 pandemic and other stories of national importance. A typical working day involves copy-editing dozens of drafts, managing junior sub-editors in shifts and keeping an eye on developing stories. This added responsibility followed a couple of years of filing stories based on press briefings, bytes and inputs from reporters on the ground.
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