Uvalde school district officials fired embattled Police Chief Pete Arredondo three months after the Robb Elementary School shooting that left 19 students and two teachers dead. The district has not fired any other staff or officials who ignored school safety protocols and maintenance requests that could have prevented the shooting.
The Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Board of Trustees fired Arredondo at the end of a nine-minute hearing. The chief and his attorney declined to attend the meeting and instead, offered a 17-page written response, KENS CBS5 reported.
The attorney claimed the district did not follow proper procedures to terminate the chief’s contract. He also claimed the district would not allow the chief to carry his handgun in order to defend himself after receiving death threats.
The attorney also questioned the district’s role in not taking proper steps to prevent the shooting on May 25.
If the district erected six-foot fences aroundthe school leaving only one entrance/exit, it could have been different. If school employeesdid as they were told and kept their doors always locked during periods of instruction, asthe district policy dictates, it could have been different. If radios worked inside theclassroom buildings, it could have been different. If the school had extraction toolsavailable to the police, it could have been different. If the school district would have prioritized Chief Arredondo’s request over a year prior to the incident, for key-card locks,better fencing, better training, and more equipment, if could have been different. You need to remember when you point your finger and someone, three fingers are pointing backat you. You cannot exonerate the principal with unlocked doors and crucify the police chiefthat made it known over a year before, of the poor policy enforcement on keeping doorslocked. And, the information regarding Chief Arredondo’s warnings, having just beenreleased publicly today, shows how premature this proposal of discipline is. (Emphasis included from original document posted above.)
Following a 90-minute deliberation, school trustees voted unanimously to fire Chief Arredondo Wednesday night.
Members of the community, including young students, lashed out at the now-fired chief and the school board. Speakers said the district took too long in holding someone accountable. Others condemned Arredondo for not attending the meeting to face the consequences.
The chief’s termination was effective immediately, KENS reported.
The firing of the chief comes days after a San Francisco Bay Area law firm served notice on district officials and others of an impending $27 billion lawsuit, Breitbart Texas reported.
The notice cites failures of the school district that could have prevented the attack on the elementary school. As previously reported by Breitbart Texas, school district officials failed to follow their own security policies and ignored maintenance requests to address a broken locking mechanism on the classroom door in question.
In July, school district officials placed Robb Elementary School Principal Mandy Gutierrez on administrative leave following a 77-page report published by the Texas House of Representatives which detailed failures by district officials and law enforcement.
The report noted “systematic failures and egregiously poor decision making” that contributed to the deaths of 21 on May 24, Breitbart Texas reported.
Potential defendants of the planned lawsuit are now on notice regarding the $27 billion in damages.
“We cannot allow these kinds of shooting tragedies to ever occur again,” attorney Charles Bonner told KENS. “It will not bring back 19 10-or 9-year-old children, it will not bring (back) the two teachers. But it will address this tragedy.”
Details regarding the federal, state, and local claims can be found in the report published by KENS.
Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s What’s Your Point? Sunday-morning talk show. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX and Face
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