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Uvalde school board fires police chief Pete Arredondo

The Uvalde school district’s under pressure police chief Pete Arredondo was fired on Wednesday following allegations that he made several critical mistakes during the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School that left a total of 21 people dead. Arredondo’s dismissal has taken place 3 months after the shooting.

The Board of Trustees held a meeting which was attended family members affected by the shooting, Arredondo himself was not present at the meeting.  The vote to fire Arredondo was unanimous. Most of the attendees at the meeting cheered when the decision was announced with one person also shouting, “We’re not done.”

The Board of Trustees announced that Lieutenant Mike Hernandez will remain as caretaker police chief.

While Arredondo did not attend the meeting, on August 24th, his lawyer issued a 17-page press statement stating that the district failed to follow due process when dismissing Arredondo and have also put his safety in jeopardy.

Arredondo’s lawyer George Hyde stated that death threats were the leading reason for his client’s absence at the meeting and that “depriving Chief Arredondo of all compensation and benefits afforded him under the contract” does not count by law as a “complaint’ to justify the termination of his contract.

“Chief Arredondo will not participate in his own illegal and unconstitutional public lynching and respectfully requests the Board immediately reinstate him, with all backpay and benefits and close the complaint as unfounded,” Hyde said in a statement.

Arredondo was put on leave from his position as police chief in June after Texas’s Department of Public Safety director Steve McCraw dubbed the police response to the shooting an “abject failure.”

McCraw said in a testimony before the senate committee that Arredondo was “the only thing stopping a hallway of dedicated officers” from entering the adjoining fourth grade classrooms where the shooter was already shooting mercilessly. 

McCraw also said that Arredondo “decided to place the lives of officers before the lives of children,” arguing that law enforcement had a large enough presence at the scene of the shootings to have stopped the 18-year-old gunman within three minutes if the on-scene commander had not kept officers from entering the rooms. 

Uvalde superintendent Hal Harrell joined McCraw in demanding Arredondo’s termination. 

ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: THE74MILLION.ORG

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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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