Five Texas Department of Public Safety officials who responded to the Uvalde school shooting in May are facing formal investigations into their actions that day, the agency said. revealed on Tuesday,
Two out of the five officers have been suspended with pay. The other three are on duty till the results of the investigation are out.
The inspector general’s office is specifically investigating whether any of the five officers violated the policy that governs how active shooters are confronted.
More than 370 law enforcement officers from 23 different agencies responded to Rob Elementary School that day, 91 of whom were from DPS.
After initially facing gunfire inside the school, officers withdrew from the building and waited more than an hour to shoot the gunman. During this, the injured children and teachers were trapped inside calling 911, pleading for help.
The gunman eventually killed 19 children and two teachers.
Separately on Tuesday, the DPS issued a letter clarifying how officers are to respond to active shooters, and instructing them to engage with the attacker “until he is neutralized”. .
“DPS officers responding to an active shooter at a school will be authorized to foresee any delay in neutralizing an attacker,” said Steven McCraw, Texas DPS director. wrote, “When a subject fires a weapon in school, he or she remains an active shooter until it is neutralized and is not considered a ‘barricaded subject’.”
McCraw called the law enforcement response to the shooting of Rob Elementary a “gross failure.”
Uvalde School District police chief Pete Arredondo was fired last month over the ragged reaction. Arredondo has disputed the criticism, which his lawyer described as “publicly crowded”.
Immediately after the violence, Uvalde officials and police issued misleading and false statements about their response, then declined to release public records that would clarify the matter, prompting The Associated Press and other news organizations to file suit. Forced to.