“Due to the dearth of readability that is still and the unknown timing of when I’ll obtain the outcomes of the investigations, I’ve made the choice to put Chief Arredondo on administrative depart efficient on this date,” Harrell wrote within the announcement to the media.
Lt. Mike Hernandez is assuming the duties of the UCISD Chief of Police, Harrell mentioned.
The superintendent wrote that he had meant to attend for an investigation to be completed earlier than making personnel choices.
“Immediately, I’m nonetheless with out particulars of the investigations being performed by varied companies,” he wrote.
Arredondo testified Tuesday behind closed doorways in Austin to a Texas Home committee in search of solutions to what occurred Might 24 when 21 folks have been gunned down at an elementary faculty, however has not spoken publicly about his decision-making on the day of the capturing.
The varsity district’s announcement comes a day after the Uvalde Metropolis Council, of which Arredondo is a brand new member, voted to disclaim his request for a depart of absence.
Harrell isn’t alone in showing to be pissed off by the lack of know-how from investigators.
Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin on Tuesday slammed the Texas Division of Public Safety (DPS) for its lack of transparency and accused its director, Col. Steven McCraw, of deliberately minimizing his company’s errors within the weeks following the bloodbath at Robb Elementary Faculty.
“Col. McCraw has an agenda and it isn’t to current a full report on what occurred and provides factual solutions on what occurred to this neighborhood,” he added.
As well as, state Sen. Roland Gutierrez, a Democrat representing the County of Uvalde, filed a lawsuit Wednesday in opposition to DPS, arguing the company violated the Texas Public Data Act when his request for data on the capturing was ignored.
“Within the wake of the mindless tragedy, the folks of Uvalde and Texas have demanded solutions from their authorities. So far, they’ve been met with lies, misstatements, and shifts of blame,” the lawsuit states.
The DPS director accused Arredondo, who McCraw and others have recognized because the on-scene commander, of ordering police to attend in a close-by hallway for pointless gear and keys to a door that was not even locked.
“Three minutes after the topic entered the West constructing, there was a adequate variety of armed officers sporting physique armor to isolate, distract and neutralize the topic,” McCraw mentioned. “The one factor stopping the hallway of devoted officers from coming into rooms 111 and 112 was the on-scene commander, who determined to put the lives of officers earlier than the lives of kids.”
But authorities have repeatedly modified their account of key info about what occurred contained in the rooms and what police did in response throughout these 77 minutes.
McLaughlin mentioned that the repeated misstatements and blame-shifting from Texas authorities was dividing the neighborhood and irritating grieving households
“What issues to Uvalde is that these brokenhearted households and this grieving neighborhood get a full investigation and an correct report of what occurred that day,” he mentioned. “The petty infighting, the clickbait headlines and the politically motivated scapegoating isn’t serving to anybody.”
CNN has reached out to the Texas Division of Public Security, the district lawyer’s workplace, the chair of the Texas Home investigating committee and the San Antonio workplace of the FBI for additional remark.
State senator’s lawsuit challenges DPS secrecy
In his lawsuit filed Wednesday, Gutierrez challenged the DPS’s choices to withhold data from the general public, together with police bodycam footage, 911 audio and ballistics experiences.
“DPS has violated Chapter 552 of the Texas Authorities by failing to offer public paperwork which can be presumed to be public inside an inexpensive time,” the lawsuit states.
In a bit titled “The Cowl-Up,” the lawsuit notes that DPS has used an exception to the regulation to maintain information non-public.
“These authorities companies have used the ‘on going regulation enforcement exception’ to the Texas open information regulation to disallow entry to data that may make clear the response to the varsity capturing,” the lawsuit states.
Gutierrez is asking the Travis County District Courtroom to rule that DPS instantly present the paperwork in his information request.
District Legal professional Christina Mitchell Busbee issued a press release two weeks in the past stating the capturing was being investigated by the FBI and Texas Rangers and that “any launch of information to that incident presently would intrude with mentioned ongoing investigation and would impede an intensive and full investigation.”
Nonetheless, Kelley Shannon, the manager director of the Freedom of Data Basis of Texas, urged transparency in a press release Wednesday.
“It is very important word that the Texas Public Data Act doesn’t require regulation enforcement investigators to withhold data from the general public a few crime,” Shannon mentioned. “The regulation enforcement exception to launch is discretionary. In actual fact, many police and prosecutors throughout Texas routinely launch investigative data to the general public after they really feel the necessity to — whether or not to assist catch a wished suspect, to hunt extra tips on against the law or to showcase the optimistic efficiency of police.”
Mayor says he is pissed off by lack of transparency
On the metropolis council assembly, McLaughlin famous that officers from a minimum of eight regulation enforcement companies have been within the hallway outdoors the lecture rooms on the day of the capturing. McLaughlin mentioned he has no want to pursue elected workplace once more and is “not protecting up for anyone,” saying all responding companies needs to be held accountable.
He mentioned the leaking of sure bits of knowledge over the previous few weeks “continues to create chaos in our neighborhood and retains the entire reality from popping out.”
“I am simply as pissed off — perhaps not as pissed off because the households which have misplaced their family members — however it pisses me off that I can not provide you with solutions or cannot get you solutions,” McLaughlin mentioned.
McLaughlin mentioned he was meant to obtain a day by day briefing from authorities since its onset however none has been supplied.
“The gloves are off. As we all know it, we are going to share it. We’re not going to carry again anymore,” he mentioned.
The town council assembly additionally took subject with Arredondo’s absence from the general public eye.
CNN’s Jamiel Lynch, Andy Rose, Christina Maxouris, Amanda Musa, Rosalina Nieves, Amy Simonson, Travis Caldwell and Steve Almasy contributed to this report.