UVALDE, Texas — Uvalde families awaited a new report Sunday that was expected to outline police failures in the May school shooting that left 19 children and two teachers dead, after weeks of conflicting and inaccurate statements from authorities surrounding why law enforcement waited so longto confront the gunman.
An investigative committee headed by the Texas House of Representatives has produced a report following weeks of close-door conversations with more than 40 people. This includes witnesses, law enforcement officers and other personnel who were at the scene of the incident at Robb Elementary May 24, 2012.
It was expected that the findings of this report would provide the most comprehensive account of the inaction of fully armed police officers, who assembled in the hall of the school and waited for more than an hour before entering a fourth-grade classroom.
Before releasing their report, the committee scheduled an intimate meeting with Uvalde family members to review the findings.
Flowers that had been piled high in the city’s central square had been removed as of Sunday, leaving a few stuffed animal maps scattered around the fountains alongside photos of some of the children who were killed.
A nearly 80-minute hallway surveillance video published by the Austin American-Statesman this week publicly showed for the first time a hesitant and haphazard tactical response, which the head of Texas’ state police has condemned as a failure and some Uvalde residents have blasted as cowardly.
Since the incident, Uvalde has seen an increase in calls for accountability from police officers. We know of only one person who was present at the site of the most violent school shooting in Texas’ history.
This report was the product of a number of investigations, one led by the Justice Department. According to a report by Texas State University tactical experts, a Uvalde officer was able to prevent the gunman from entering the school with his AR-15.
Don McLaughlin from Uvalde has stated that the shooting never occurred despite conflicting accounts and statements. McLaughlin, who has been increasingly criticised and accused of trying minimize the impact of troopers’ actions during the massacre, requested that the Texas Department of Public Safety prepare the report.
Steve McCraw (the Texas DPS chief) has called the response of the police an abject failure.
Read More From Time