By PAUL J. WEBER
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Uvalde’s college district on Friday pulled its embattled campus police pressure off the job following a wave of latest outrage over the hiring of a former state trooper who was a part of the hesitant legislation enforcement response through the May taking pictures at Robb Elementary School that left 21 lifeless.
School leaders additionally put two members of the district police division on administrative go away, certainly one of whom selected to retire as an alternative, in accordance with a press release launched by the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District.
The extraordinary transfer by Uvalde college leaders to droop campus police operations — one month into a brand new college 12 months within the South Texas group — underscored the sustained strain that households of a number of the 19 youngsters and two lecturers killed within the May 24 assault have saved on the district.
Brett Cross, whose 10-year-old son Uziyah Garcia was among the many victims, had been protesting exterior the Uvalde college administration constructing for the previous two weeks, demanding accountability over officers permitting a gunman with an AR-15-style rifle to stay in a fourth-grade classroom for greater than 70 minutes.
Uvalde households have mentioned college students within the district should not secure as long as officers who waited so lengthy to confront and kill the gunman stay on the job.
“We did it!” Cross tweeted.
The Uvalde college district had 5 campus cops on the scene of the taking pictures, in accordance with a damning report from Texas lawmakers that laid out a number of breakdowns within the response. A complete of practically 400 officers responded, together with college district police, town’s police, county sheriff’s deputies, state police and U.S. Border Patrol brokers, amongst others.
The fallout Friday is the primary in Uvalde’s college police pressure because the district fired former police Chief Pete Arredondo in August. He stays the one officer to have been fired from his job following one of many deadliest classroom assaults in U.S. historical past.
The district mentioned it could ask the Texas Department of Public Safety, which had already assigned dozens of troopers to the district for the varsity 12 months, for extra assist. Spokespersons for the company didn’t instantly return messages in search of remark Friday.
“We are confident that staff and student safety will not be compromised during this transition,” the district mentioned in a press release.
The assertion didn’t specify how lengthy campus police operations would stay suspended. School cops can be assigned to different roles within the district, the assertion mentioned.
The transfer comes a day after revelations that the district not solely employed a former DPS trooper who was one of many officers who rushed to the scene of Robb Elementary, however that she was amongst not less than seven troopers later positioned below inside investigation for her actions.
Officer Crimson Elizondo was fired Thursday, at some point after CNN first reported her hiring. She has not responded to voicemails and messages left by The Associated Press.
Steve McCraw, the pinnacle of the state’s Department of Public Safety, has known as the legislation enforcement response to the taking pictures an “abject failure.” McCraw has additionally come below strain because the chief of a division had greater than 90 troopers on the scene however nonetheless has the assist of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
On Thursday, after Elizondo was fired, Abbott known as it a “poor decision” for the varsity to rent the previous trooper and that it was as much as the district to “own up to it.”
For extra AP protection of the Uvalde college taking pictures: https://apnews.com/hub/uvalde-school-shooting