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Uvalde school police chief placed on leave amid probe into Texas shooting response – National

The Uvalde college district’s police chief was placed on go away Wednesday following allegations that he erred in his response to the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School that left 19 college students and two academics lifeless.

Uvalde Consolidated Impartial College District Superintendent Hal Harrell stated that he put faculties police Chief Pete Arredondo on administrative go away as a result of the information of what occurred stay unclear. In an announcement, Harrell didn’t tackle Arredondo’s actions as on-site commander through the assault however stated he didn’t know when particulars of a number of investigations into the regulation enforcement response to the slayings can be revealed.

“From the start of this horrible occasion, I shared that the district would wait till the investigation was full earlier than making personnel choices,” Harrell stated. “Due to the shortage of readability that is still and the unknown timing of when I’ll obtain the outcomes of the investigations, I’ve made the choice to put Chief Arredondo on administrative go away efficient on this date.”

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A spokesperson for the Uvalde college district, Anne Marie Espinoza, declined to say whether or not Arredondo would proceed to be paid whereas on go away.

One other officer will assume the embattled chief’s duties, Harrell stated.

Col. Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Division of Public Security, informed a state Senate listening to on Tuesday that Arredondo made “horrible choices” because the bloodbath unfolded on Might 24 , and that the police response was an “abject failure.”

Three minutes after 18-year-old Salvador Ramos entered the varsity, ample armed regulation enforcement had been on scene to cease the gunman, McCraw testified. But cops armed with rifles waited in a college hallway for greater than an hour whereas the gunman carried out the bloodbath. The classroom door couldn’t be locked from the within, however there isn’t any indication officers tried to open the door whereas the gunman was inside, McCraw stated.

Click to play video: 'Uvalde, Texas mayor says school shooting site will be demolished'

Uvalde, Texas mayor says college capturing website shall be demolished

Uvalde, Texas mayor says college capturing website shall be demolished

McCraw has stated mother and father begged police exterior the varsity to maneuver in and college students contained in the classroom repeatedly pleaded with 911 operators for assist whereas greater than a dozen officers waited in a hallway. Officers from different companies urged Arredondo to allow them to transfer in as a result of kids had been at risk.

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“The one factor stopping a hallway of devoted officers from coming into Room 111 and 112 was the on-scene commander who determined to put the lives of officers earlier than the lives of youngsters,” McCraw stated.

Sen. Paul Bettencourt informed the state Senate listening to that Arredondo ought to have stepped down immediately.

“This man ought to have eliminated himself from the job instantly as a result of, simply his response, he was incapable of it,” Bettencourt stated.

Learn extra:

Robb Elementary School, Uvalde school shooting site, to be demolished

Arredondo and his lawyer have declined repeated requests for remark from The Related Press and didn’t instantly reply to an inquiry Wednesday about his go away.

Arredondo has tried to defend his actions, telling the Texas Tribune that he didn’t take into account himself the commander in control of operations and that he assumed another person had taken management of the regulation enforcement response. He stated he didn’t have his police and campus radios however that he used his cellphone to name for tactical gear, a sniper and the classroom keys.

It’s nonetheless not clear why it took so lengthy for police to enter the classroom, how they communicated with one another through the assault, and what their physique cameras present.

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Officers have declined to launch extra particulars, citing the investigation.

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Texas college capturing: Uvalde college district working with exterior safety agency

Texas college capturing: Uvalde college district working with exterior safety agency – Jun 9, 2022

Arredondo, 50, grew up in Uvalde and spent a lot of his practically 30-year profession in regulation enforcement within the metropolis. He took the top police job on the college district in 2020 and was sworn in as a member of the Metropolis Council in a closed-door ceremony Might 31.

That metropolis council seat may additionally be at risk. He has requested a go away of absence and missed Tuesday night time’s council assembly, when the remainder of the town council on Tuesday denied him a go away of absence.

If he misses three straight conferences, the council can take away him, as some members of the general public demanded in Tuesday night time’s assembly.

–With recordsdata from Reuters

© 2022 The Canadian Press

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