… the premature release of piecemeal information or anything related to the May 24 Department of Public Safety (DPS)/Texas Rangers investigation is a disservice to families who lost children or parents because the true facts need to come out once all investigations/reviews … are complete.Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin in a statement responding to the investigative report released last week by the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Center (ALERRT) on the Uvalde school shooting.
Background: Last week, ALERRT — the leading organization for active shooter response training in the nation — released an investigative report on the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, which killed 19 children and two teachers. The report was put together by ALERRT at the request of the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the detailed findings so far have been taken from video surveillance, bodycam footage, interviews, etc.
Why It Matters: In McLaughlin's statement, he said ALERRT's report "does not give a complete and accurate account of what happened at Robb Elementary School," and denied the finding that a Uvalde police officer had a potential opportunity to shoot the gunman before he entered the school that day.
- In its report, ALERRT found that a Uvalde police officer saw the shooter outside of the school, and that the officer asked his supervisor for permission to shoot. Because he either did not get a timely response or did not receive a response at all, the officer did not take the shot and the shooter entered the school.
- In McLaughlin's statement, he said: "No Uvalde police department officer saw the shooter … prior to him entering the school. No Uvalde police officers had any opportunity to take a shot at the gunman."
- ALERRT's executive director Pete Blair has responded to McLaughlin's statement, saying this finding was confirmed by statements from both the Uvalde police officer and the officer's supervisor to DPS investigators, while also emphasizing this finding from the report: "Ultimately, the decision to use deadly force always lies with the officer who will use the force. If the officer was not confident that he could both hit his target and of his backdrop if he missed, he should not have fired."
- Important To Note: In its report, ALERRT noted their findings are "subject to changes as new or further evidence becomes available." The FBI and a legislative committee are also separately conducting an ongoing investigation into the shooting — which was one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history.
ALERRT Report on Uvalde (SmartHER News)
Uvalde mayor disputes report that police missed opportunity to shoot gunman (The Texas Tribune)
by Jenna Lee,