Jun 21, 2022

Uvalde parents call for Chief Arredondo’s job as new details on law enforcement’s response comes to light 6/20/22 Transcript

Uvalde parents call for Cheif Arredondo's job as new details on law enforcement's response comes to light 6/20/22 Transcript
RevBlogTranscriptsMass ShootingUvalde parents call for Chief Arredondo’s job as new details on law enforcement’s response comes to light 6/20/22 Transcript

Community members who lost loved ones at Robb Elementary called for transparency and accountability at the school district board meeting. Read the transcript here.

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Speaker 1: (00:00)
Good evening. And thanks for joining us. I’m Ecius Romano.

Speaker 1: (00:03)
Tomorrow marks four weeks since 19 students and two teachers were murdered in the Uvalde school shooting. And tonight major new developments in the investigation.

Speaker 1: (00:12)
For the first time we are seeing inside Robb Elementary during the shooting; this photo was obtained by KVUE, our Austin sister station and the Austin American Statesmen. It shows officers with rifles and a shield nearly an hour before they took down the shooter. This image raising even more questions about the police response.

Speaker 1: (00:34)
Plus more outcry tonight from victim’s families, they spoke at a school board meeting in Uvalde this evening, and that meeting is still going on at this hour. Kens 5 reporter Matt Houston is live in Uvalde with what the families had to say. We’ll get to him in just a minute.

Speaker 1: (00:50)
But we start with Tony Peletsky from our sister station who uncovered this surveillance image. His tweet publishing the photo tonight has been retweeted more than 23,000 times as the #Uvaldecoverup is trending right now.

Speaker 2: (01:08)
This photograph is so significant because it is the first time we are seeing inside the hallway of Robb Elementary school. And it shows that officers had high powered weapons and protective gear long before they took down the gunman.

Speaker 2: (01:24)
You can see that officers had a high powered weapon and another had a ballistic shield. This was at 11:52 in the morning, 19 minutes after the gunman entered the school at 11:33. But it took another 58 minutes before those officers eventually stormed the classroom. Investigators believe that officers had adequate protection and fire power to take down the gunman much sooner.

Speaker 2: (01:50)
This is all part of a new timeline that investigators have put together using video from inside Robb Elementary, as well as body camera footage. It is still unclear when or if video from inside that school, as well as officer’s body camera video that is being used as part of this investigation will ever be released to the public. Back to you.

Speaker 1: (02:13)
Now, those new developments broke just moments before the Uvalde School Board met tonight. There parents implored trustees to fire Police Chief Pete Arredondo. KENS 5 reporter Matt Houston is in Uvalde tonight. And Matt, the meeting is still going on right now, but walk us through what’s happened so far.

Speaker 3: (02:32)
Yeah Ecius, we’re going on three-and-a-half hours, but just a couple of hours ago, the board held sort of a public comment section, eight people spoke, four of whom were related to victims who died in Robb Elementary on May 24th. None of those people left tonight’s meeting looking visibly satisfied.

Speaker 4: (02:50)
Parents walked out hollering, “Fire Pete,” when trustees finished their public business, they’d asked earlier for action.

Speaker 5: (02:58)
I think it’s this pretty clear, it’s pretty clear what everybody wants here. We all know that they messed up.

Speaker 4: (03:08)
Moms and dads aimed frustration at law enforcement, though no officer took more heat than school police chief Pete Arredondo.

Speaker 6: (03:14)
We were failed by Pete Arredondo, he failed our kids, teachers, parents, and city. And by keeping him on your step y’all are continuing to fail us.

Speaker 4: (03:24)
Other parents questioned whether school fences are high enough, if the district has enough officers, and if trustees are aggressively pursuing new safety plans.

Speaker 4: (03:32)
Perhaps most heartbreaking Liliana Garcia described her first Father’s Day as an orphan, her mother, a teacher, died in the shooting, and her father died of a heart attack days later.

Speaker 7: (03:42)
We realized yesterday on Father’s Day that we will never get to enjoy our mom’s famous celebratory breakfast, for the table we once sat at with absolute joy laughter is now quiet and holds two empty seats.

Speaker 3: (04:00)
Liliana told the board that her mom died protecting her students, but asked the board who was there to protect her mom. The board is currently meeting behind closed doors. They’re discussing a number of things, including how to allocate certain resources donated to the district, including security equipment. Live in Uvalde, I’m Matt Houston, KENS 5.

Speaker 1: (04:21)
Matt, thank you.

Speaker 1: (04:22)
Tomorrow Uvalde school district police chief Pete Arredondo will be the subject of a city council meeting. They’ll consider granting the newly elected councilman a leave of absence from future council meetings. It’s not clear if Arredondo asked for the leave. After the city council meeting Uvalde mayor, Don McLaughlin will hold a news conference.

Speaker 1: (04:42)
Also tomorrow, the Special Texas House Investigative Committee will meet in Austin. Today they were in Uvalde as five people testified behind closed doors, that included the gunman’s aunt, Natalie Salisade, Uvalde Police Chief Daniel Rodriguez, Sergeant Daniel Gormado, and DPS Trooper Joshua Bordofski also testified.

Speaker 1: (05:04)
Multiple Uvalde school police officers have cooperated with the House Committee’s probe and have been interviewed.

Speaker 1: (05:12)
Tonight, Texas Senate Democrats are again pushing Governor Greg Abbott to call a special session in response to the shooting. In Austin, 13 senators held a news conference to address gun violence and mental health.

Speaker 8: (05:25)
44% of Texans want stricter gun laws. 31% of gun owners want stricter gun laws. And I’m willing to bet you that after Uvalde, those numbers are higher. Our children should be excited to go to school, not fear for their lives. These tragedies will continue to happen until we pass some basic, basic common sense gun safety measures.

Speaker 1: (05:58)
The senators also say they’ll support proposals like raising the age to legally own an assault weapon from 18 to 21, creating red flag laws, and regulating private gun sales.

Speaker 1: (06:10)
Earlier this month, governor Abbott called for a special legislative committee on topics to prevent future school shootings. The Senate’s special committee will meet tomorrow at 9:00 AM.

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