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Uvalde mayor responds after CNN report shows senior cop knew children were trapped with gunman

Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin said he was shocked and angered at Lt. Mariano Pargas after a CNN report showed that Pargas failed to organize help for children despite knowing they were trapped inside with a gunman.

“Lt. Pargas will not be a member of the Uvalde police department. At the very latest at the end of the week, if not sooner,” he told CNN on Tuesday.

According to CNN, Pargas was put on administrative leave in July, two months after law enforcement’s highly criticized response to the massacre that killed 19 fourth-graders and two teachers. 

CNN’s report showed that Pargas reached out to his dispatchers to get the details of a 911 call from a student trapped in a classroom but did not take control and this now gives city officials all they need to get him off the payroll, McLaughlin said.

McLaughlin thanked CNN for their reporting but expressed frustration that city leaders weren’t given the information while the local district attorney conducted an investigation into the possibility of criminal charges for certain senior officers who chose not to act until the shooting had already occurred.

In June, Uvalde County District Attorney Christina Mitchell Busbee said that no records or videos should be released while investigations were ongoing.

“Any release of records to that incident at this time would interfere with said ongoing investigation and would impede a thorough and complete investigation,” she said in a statement.

McLaughlin added, “As the mayor of this community and I can speak for the county judge across the street, we have not been briefed one time by law enforcement.”

McLaughlin told CNN he was frustrated that information was still being not being provided to him so long after the shooting had taken place.

“I think Mariano would have been gone sooner,” he said. “It just goes to show what we originally put him on leave for – his failure to act and set up a command situation. And then as acting chief of police, he gets this information and did nothing with it, what I saw.”

ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE 

PHOTO CREDITS: CNN

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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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