Yesterday (July 17), a report by Texas legislators revealed “systemic failures” contributed to the deaths of 21 people in the Uvalde mass shooting. According to Reuters, an extensive committee investigation by the Texas House of Representatives took place to shed light on the delay in action by Uvalde law enforcement officials. As previously reported by REVOLT, on May 24, a gunman entered Robb Elementary School and carried out the deadly attack. It took a team of armed officials over an hour to stop one active shooter.
The 77-page report claims 376 law enforcement officials entered the school without proper leadership. An excerpt from the findings stated, “Law enforcement responders failed to adhere to their active shooter training, and they failed to prioritize saving the lives of innocent victims over their own safety.” Lieutenant Mariano Pargas, the acting city policy chief, is on administrative leave. The report added, “Other than the attacker, the Committee did not find any ‘villains’ in the course of its investigation. Instead, we found systemic failures and egregious poor decision making.” It continued, “The void of leadership could have contributed to the loss of life as injured victims waited over an hour for help, and the attacker continued to sporadically fire his weapon.”
Along with Pargas, another official whose name has come up a number of times during proceedings, is Pete Arredondo. Arredondo is the school district’s police chief. He has been heavily criticized for not adequately handling the situation. Previous reports have stated that multiple law enforcement agencies came together on May 24 to stop the gunman. “Despite an obvious atmosphere of chaos, the ranking officers of other responding agencies did not approach (Arredondo) or anyone else perceived to be in command to point out the lack of and need for a command post, or to offer that specific assistance,” the report read.
Last month, Arredondo told the Texas Tribune he never considered himself the scene’s incident commander. School officials were also mentioned for not making sure the building was secure. The fence was short enough to be climbed, and the gunman entered because doors were left unlocked.