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Uvalde school district’s police didn't know about the calls made by children hiding inside Robb Elementary during the mass school shooting where 21 people were killed.
Texas Tribute reports that Texas Senator Roland Gutierrez confirmed during a press conference that the Uvalde school district’s police chief, Pete Arredondo, wasn’t made aware of calls from students for about 30 minutes after the gunman entered.
Gutierrez describes one of these 911 calls as a student pleading for authorities to take urgent action as the attack unfolded.
Senator Gutierrez labelled the response as a ‘system error’.
“Listen, I’m not blaming the Uvalde PD. I’m not blaming the ISD cops or the troopers. There is enough blame here to go around,” Gutierrez said.
“There was human error and there was system error.”
Instead of calls being directed to the school district's police, they were relayed to the Uvalde Police Department, who work separately from the school’s authorities, according to Gutierrez.
“That’s an absence of leadership that starts at the top with the legislature,” he said.
“Everybody’s to blame for what went on, including (Governor) Greg Abbott, in a big way.”
The police’s response to the school mass shooting has been widely criticised after footage emerged of parents standing outside the school begging police to do more as the massacre unfolded.
Javier Cazares, whose fourth-grade daughter, Jacklyn, was killed in the shooting, raced to the school after hearing a gunman had opened fire.
Distressed with the police not moving, he told Associated Press reporters that he said to other onlookers: “Let’s just rush in because the cops aren’t doing anything like they are supposed to.
“More could have been done.”
He added: “They were unprepared.”
The south Texas regional director of the state’s department of public safety Victor Escalon also shared in a press conference that nobody 'confronted' the gunman, and, ‘approximately an hour later’, US Border Patrol broke into the classroom and killed the gunman.
The Guardian reports that a Federal investigation looking into law enforcement’s response to the shooting is underway.
Spokesperson for the US Department of Justice Anthony Coley shared that the mayor of Uvalde, Don McLaughlin had requested the investigation.
Coley said: “The goal of the review is to provide an independent account of law enforcement actions and responses that day, and to identify lessons learned and best practices to help first responders prepare for and respond to active shooter events.”