Uvalde school’s police chief says he’s ‘in contact’ with state authorities

Uvalde school district Police Chief Pete Arredondo said he is “in contact” with state authorities investigating the police response to the Texas school shooting on a daily basis.

The remarks by the police chief, who is in the spotlight following an acknowledgement by officials that they should have engaged sooner with a gunman who killed 19 children and two educators in last week’s shooting, followed reporting that Arredondo was no longer cooperating with police. 

Arredondo spoke with CNN Wednesday, saying he is in touch with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) every day and declining to comment further while funerals are ongoing for the shooting victims. 

Speaking with a reporter about releasing additional information, he said, “We’re going to be respectful to the family. We’re going to do that eventually. Whenever this is done and the families quit grieving, then we’ll do that obviously.” 

Police responding to the Uvalde shootings initially received praise for their efforts but have since faced criticism for waiting to enter the classroom where the shooter barricaded himself, believing students were no longer in harm’s way. 

A DPS official told NBC News Tuesday that Arredondo had not responded to a request for a follow-up interview from state officials in two days. The official said the police departments for the city and the Uvalde school district have been cooperating with investigators, but ABC News reported Tuesday that multiple law enforcement officials said the two police forces are no longer cooperating.

Officials have repeatedly contradicted themselves in their telling of the timeline of the shooting in the days following the attack. 

The Texas Rangers Division is leading the state’s investigation into the entire incident, including the police response. The Justice Department announced Sunday that it would launch its own independent investigation after receiving a request from Uvalde’s mayor, Don McLaughlin (R).