An 11-year-old girl who covered herself in her dead classmate’s blood and played dead to survive the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, last month told Congress on Wednesday about her harrowing experience during the massacre.
In prerecorded testimony during a House Oversight Committee hearing on gun violence, Miah Cerrillo said her fourth-grade class was watching a movie in a classroom shared by two teachers, Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia, when one of them received an email alert about an active shooter.
When the teacher went to the door, Miah said, the gunman was in the hallway. Her teacher saw the gunman, came back into the classroom, locked the door and said, “Go hide.”
The gunman shot his way in, found the teacher and according to Miah told her, “Goodnight.”
“He shot her in the head,” Miah said. “And then he shot some of my classmates and the whiteboard.”
“He shot my friend that was next to me,” she continued, “and I thought he was gonna come back to the room so I grabbed blood and I put it all over me.”
Miah said she remained quiet until she was able to grab her teacher’s phone and call 911. She said she told the dispatcher to “send the police in our classroom.”
The gunman, identified by authorities as an 18-year-old, killed 19 children and two teachers before he was killed by police in one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history.
In her testimony, Miah said she doesn’t feel safe at school because “I don't want it to happen again” — but fears it will.
Miah's father, Miguel Cerrillo, delivered emotional testimony in person before the committee.
“I could’ve lost my baby girl,” Cerrillo said. “She is not the same little girl that I used to play with.”
The father of five said he hopes “something will change — not only for our kids but every single kid in the world, because schools are not safe anymore. Something needs to really change.”
The hearing, which included testimony from parents of victims and survivors of the mass shootings in Buffalo, N.Y., and Uvalde, comes amid ongoing talks of new bipartisan gun legislation.
It also comes during an ongoing review by the Justice Department of the police response to the May 24 shootings in Uvalde, as questions about decisions the department made during the massacre continue to mount.