‘School security is the worst’: Mother of Bellaire HS shooting victim blasts school, district for lax security

Cesar Cortes’ mother speaks in wake of son’s death

BELLAIRE, Texas – The mother of the teen shot and killed at Bellaire High School last week spoke with Bellaire police detectives Monday.

Cesar Cortes, 19, was shot and killed Tuesday at the school and a 16-year-old student faces a manslaughter charge in connection with Cortes’ death.

“The whole school district, school security is the worst. Anyone can carry a gun and keep it in their locker,” Cortes’ mother told KPRC 2 Monday.

Bellaire police also announced Monday that the weapon believed to be involved in the Cortes’ death had been recovered after days of searching.

"The pistol believed to be the weapon used in last Tuesday’s shooting at Bellaire High School has been recovered and is in possession of the Bellaire Police Department,” Chief Byron Holloway stated.

Holloway did not offer further detail about where the handgun was finally located after the extensive search.

KPRC 2 reached out to the Houston Independent School District Monday for comment but did not hear back.

In a Friday statement, acting Superintendent Grenita Lathan said HISD was exploring measures to increase student safety.

“These include reconvening safety and security council committees on every campus that will review safety protocols and procedures,” Lathan wrote.

In the days since the fatal shooting, Bellaire High School has restricted entrances and instituted bag checks, among other updated security procedures.