Uvalde school police chief, criticized over school shooting response, is not cooperating with state investigation, Texas DPS says
- Pete Arredondo, chief of the
UvaldeIndependent School District police force, is not cooperating with state investigators.
- The Texas Department of Public Safety told Insider he has not responsed to an interview request.
The Uvalde chief of police blamed for failing to confront the gunman who killed 21 people last week is not cooperating with an investigation by Texas law enforcement.
At a press conference last Friday, the director of the Texas Department of Public Safety told reporters that Pete Arredondo, chief of the Uvalde Independent School District police force, was the one who decided that officers should not confront the gunman as he was barricaded in a classroom. Instead, 19 officers spent nearly 80 minutes in a hallway outside the classroom — even as students inside pleaded with 911 dispatchers to send help.
A spokesperson for DPS told Insider Arredondo "has yet to respond" to a request for a follow-up interview about the police response "that was made a couple of days ago."
When Arredondo was asked why he was not cooperating with the investigation, he told CNN, "I am in contact with DPS every day," refuting the DPS' claims that he was unresponsive to the department.
The conflicting accounts are the latest in a string of confusion from Texas law enforcement, who have offered conflicting details around the Uvalde school shooting since the massacre happened.
Arredondo did not believe the situation involved an active shooter, according to DPS, despite the 911 calls being relayed to police. Instead, officers focused on evacuating students from other classrooms and securing the perimiter.
The gunman at Robb Elementary School was ultimately killed by federal agents — who were reportedly told by local police not to confront the shooter at all. About 30 minutes after arriving, however, agents from the tactical unit of US Customs and Border Protection defied the directive and entered the building, NBC News reported.
Earlier on Tuesday, ABC News reported that both the Uvalde Independent School District police force and the Uvalde Police were refusing to cooperate with a state investigation amid widespread criticism of their response.
However, the DPS spokesperson asserted that both are indeed "still cooperating."
Neither Uvalde police force responded to Insider's requests for comment.
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