Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Police Chief Pete Arredondo has been placed on administrative leave effective immediately, Uvalde CISD Superintendent Hal Harrell said.
The big picture: Arredondo and other Texas law enforcement officials have come under fire for explaining why it took officers so long to arrest elementary school shooter Robb, who killed 19 children and two teachers.
Driving the news: Harrell said in a statement that he originally planned to wait to make personnel decisions until the investigation into the Uvalde shooting is complete.
- But Arredondo was placed on leave due to the “remaining lack of clarity” in the investigation and the “unknown timing at which I will receive the results of the investigations,” Harrell said.
- Lt. Mike Hernandez will assume the duties of Chief of Police.
Catch up fast: Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, said late last month that Arredondo made “the wrong decision” by not breaching classrooms where the shooter was with students and teachers. .
- McCraw said Arredondo believed the shooter was barricaded inside and that it was not an active shooter situation.
- Arredondo and his attorney, George Hyde, recently defended his actions on the day of the shooting in an interview with the Texas Tribune earlier this week.
- Hyde told the Tribune that the police chief did not believe he was the incident commander at the scene because he was acting as the first responder to the shooting.
What he says : Arredondo, who was sworn in as a city council member in late May, had previously been accused of ignoring interview requests as part of the state’s investigation into the shooting.
- But he and his attorney told the Tribune he was willing to cooperate with investigations as long as he could see his previous transcripts first.
- “It’s a fair thing to ask before he has to discuss it again because over time all the information he hears, it’s hard to stay clear,” Hyde said.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with Hal Harrell’s comment and more in-depth context.