Uvalde schools police chief defends response to mass shooting in first public comments since massacre 

Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Police Chief Pete Arredondo has broken his silence since the May 24 massacre at Robb Elementary School and is defending the police response to the mass shooting that saw 19 children and two teachers killed.

Arredondo — who was sworn in as a city council member in late May — told The Texas Tribune he didn’t consider himself the commanding officer on the scene that day, and he also claimed no one told him about the 911 calls that came in during the 77 minutes before the gunman was taken down.

Arredondo claimed he didn’t bring his radios with him because time was of the essence and he said the radios would get in his way, and he wanted to have his hands free, telling The Texas Tribune one had a whiplike antenna that hit him when he ran, and one had a clip he said would cause it to fall off his tactical belt during a long run.

Arredondo’s explanations don’t fully address all the questions that have been raised. The Tribune spoke to seven law enforcement experts about Arredondo’s description of the police response. All but one said that serious lapses in judgment occurred.

Most strikingly, they said, by running into the school with no key and no radios and failing to take charge of the situation, the chief appears to have contributed to a chaotic approach in which officers deployed inappropriate tactics, adopted a defensive posture, failed to coordinate their actions, and wasted precious time as students and teachers remained trapped in two classrooms with a gunman who continued to fire his rifle.

Texas Tribune ABC News