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Former Uvalde schools police chief indicted for role in Robb Elementary shooting response

Former Uvalde schools police chief indicted for role in Robb Elementary shooting response
Posted at 6:03 PM, Jun 27, 2024

A Uvalde County grand jury has indicted former school district police Chief Pete Arredondo and another former district officer on charges of child endangerment, the first criminal charges brought against law enforcement for the botched response to the deadliest school shooting in Texas history, the San Antonio Express-News reported.

Arredondo and Adrian Gonzales face felony charges of abandoning or endangering a child, the newspaper reported.

The charges come more than two years after the May 24, 2022 shooting, in which a lone gunman killed 19 fourth graders and two teachers.

Uvalde County District Attorney Christina Mitchell convened a grand jury in January to investigate law enforcement’s delayed response and to determine whether to bring criminal charges against any of the nearly 400 federal, state and local officers involved in the response. Law enforcement officers waited 77 minutes to confront the gunman, who was ultimately shot and killed by Border Patrol officers.

The botched law enforcement response has been widely criticized, including in a U.S. Justice Department report. That report documented failures in leadership, and U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland noted that lives could have been saved had law enforcement acted sooner.

In the months following the shooting, about a dozen officers were fired, suspended or retired. Arredondo was fired about three months after the shooting. He was listed as incident commander on the school district’s active shooter response plan.

The newspaper reported that Mitchell briefed two families of victims about the indictment.

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