Superintendent Hal Harrell announced, on Wednesday, that controversial Uvalde Chief of Police Pete Arredondo is on administrative leave, due to the district’s ongoing issues.
NBC News: Uvalde schools Police Chief Pete Arredondo has been placed on administrative leave.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 22, 2022
This decision was made as Arredondo currently faces scrutiny for his reaction to the deadly shooting that occurred on May 24 at Robb Elementary School. 21 people, including 19 students and two teachers, lost their lives in the attack.
According to CNN, Harrell stated Lt. Mike Hernandez would take over for Arredondo for the time being.
In a statement, Harrell explained his move to put Chief Arredondo on administrative leave, stating the following:
“I have chosen to place Chief Arredondo on administrative leave, effective on this date. There is a lack of certainty that continues to remain and an unidentified timeframe of when I will receive the outcomes of the investigations.”
The superintendent explained he was “still without specifics of the inquiry being conducted by different agencies.”
He was asked why he said to wait until the investigation into the mass shooting concluded before making any personnel decisions.
According to reports, Arredondo spoke on Tuesday in front of a Texas House committee investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident behind closed doors.
The people of Uvalde and the rest of the country continue to look for explanations as to why it took law enforcement officers more than an hour to break into the classroom and kill the shooter.
This is especially true because a new video reportedly shows law enforcement officers never making an effort to open the door to the school.
The San Antonio Express-News confirmed the information came from a police officer who was engaged in investigating law enforcement’s reaction to the tragedy.
The investigators think the 18-year-old shooter who killed 19 students and two teachers at the school could not have shut the door to the linked classrooms from the interior of the building.
View of the Citizens
According to a story from The Daily Wire, Arredondo, who only recently became a member of the Uvalde city council, is also facing criticism from some members of the community.
They “want him out” and developed a strategy to remove him from his seat on the city council.
Kim Hammond, a resident of Uvalde, and several other citizens, all of whom made it plain they would rather not have Arredondo there, offered the plan on Tuesday during a city council meeting that Arredondo did not attend.
Hammond was joined in her proposal by several other residents.
Uvalde City Council: Extremely inspired by the lady who lives 2 doors down from the school coming up w the plan to sack Arredondo. No leave of abs. If he misses 1 more mtg he's out. If he wants to keep his job he has to show. She studied & found a technicality no one else had. pic.twitter.com/uigygoDxMu
— 🦉Serene (@MythSerene) June 22, 2022
After an emotional speech by Hammond, the council decided against granting Arredondo a leave of absence.
If he wants to maintain his place in the council, he will be required to attend meetings and confront his constituents. The speech was very well received by the council.