We’ve all heard what happened in Uvalde, Texas. And we’ve all wondered how it happened.
While it’s easy to blame the gunman for what happened, and that’s ultimately the person who is blamed, we have to look at what took place for the gunman to not only enter the school but be allowed to remain for nearly an hour before anyone intervened.
The teacher left her classroom door open.
The police showed up but didn’t interact for close to an hour.
The Department of Justice is conducting a full investigation to find out what went wrong. In the meantime, the Texas Public Safety Director has finally opened up on his thoughts about the Uvalde shooting at Robb Elementary.
Mayor Don McLaughlin has become visibly frustrated with what happened, especially as information is constantly changing about what actually happened inside of the school on the day of the massacre.
“You could never ask a child to go back or a teacher to go back to that school. Ever.” He made this comment while also announcing that the school will be demolished.
Col. Steven McCraw, the Texas Public Safety Director, has been conducting an investigation. Yet, it’s not enough for the mayor.
McLaughlin has actually gone on record to say that he believes that McCraw is making misleading statements so that he can distance and protect the state troopers and Texas Rangers who responded to the shooting at the school.
McCraw has spoken to the Texas Senate Special Committee in Austin, explaining that the law enforcement response was “an abject failure” and “antithetical to everything we’ve learned over the last two decades since the Columbine massacre.”
This doesn’t sound as though TPS is doing anything to protect the troopers. If anything, he’s just as upset about their response as McLaughlin. The mayor is simply frustrated by not having answers and is prepared to lash out at anyone and everyone.
What we do know happened is what McCraw told the committee. “Three minutes after the subject entered the West building, there was a sufficient number of armed officers wearing body armor to isolate, distract and neutralize the subject.” He went on to say that the only thing preventing the officers from entering the two classrooms was the on-scene commander who “decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children.”
That on-scene commander is Pedro “Pete” Arredondo, the Uvalde school district’s police chief. Arredondo has not spoken publicly since the incident, but he did testify to the committee behind closed doors.
There were 77 minutes between the time that the gunman entered the classroom and when law enforcement finally killed the gunman. The mayor has asked for body camera footage but has been denied.
McCraw has made it clear that the post-Columbine doctrine is clear – stop the killing. Yet, “the officers had weapons, the children had none. The officers had body armor, the children had none.”
Nothing about the timeline matches up. It was absolutely an “abject failure” on the part of every single officer who showed up to work that day. They had the ability to take down the gunman even as children were inside the classrooms, calling 911 and begging for help.
The mayor isn’t the only one demanding answers. Each and every parent and teacher wants to get answers. And the community won’t rest until each and every person who responded to that call is not only terminated but also investigated for gross negligence on the job.