Crosses with the names of Tuesday's shooting victims are placed outside Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. Credit: Jae C. Hong / AP

A Republican candidate for the Maine House of Representatives was criticized this week after sharing a debunked conspiracy theory about the Texas school shooter.

Heather Anne Sprague, who is running for House District 43, on Wednesday posted a false claim on Facebook that the Robb Elementary School shooter was a transgender person “brainwashed” by liberal teachers and that the shooting was the result.

Nineteen children ages 8 to 11 and two educators were killed in the Tuesday school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, the deadliest in the U.S. since the December 2021 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

On Thursday, she posted an apology, writing in part, “I let my concern and some false information get the best of me.”

Her opponent, Democratic incumbent Ann Matlack, said in a statement that, “To imply that those in that school brought it on themselves is irresponsible and callous.”

Both candidates will face off this fall.

House District 43 represents Cushing, Thomaston and other parts of the midcoast.