Uvalde Police Chief Daniel Rodriguez Resigns

On May 24, an 18-year-old gunman entered Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, and killed 19 children and 2 teachers. Now, the city is holding officers accountable for their failure to promptly respond to the horrific incident.

Making the tragedy worse were reports that local law enforcement was derelict in their duty to respond quickly and quell the threat. Their delayed response contributed to the high death count.

Multiple outlets reported that officers responded quickly to the emergency call but waited 77 minutes in the parking lot of the school before entering classrooms to rescue imperiled children.

The Associated Press reported that U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland ordered an investigation into the matter, saying: “We will be doing site visits to the school, we will be conducting interviews of an extremely wide variety of stakeholders, witnesses, families, law enforcement, government officials, school officials, and we will be reviewing the resources that were made available in the aftermath.”

Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Police Chief Pete Arredondo, the on-site commander during the attack, came under fire for mismanaging the incident and limited cooperation with investigators.

In the months following the shooting, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) complained that Arredondo had stopped cooperating with Texas authorities. Arredondo claimed he maintained daily contact with DPS.

City officials fired Arredondo for cause in February 2023.

Uvalde Police Chief Daniel Rodriguez has also been in the spotlight. He has been held responsible for his department’s actions,though he was on vacation and out of state at the time of the shooting.

The Uvalde City Council officially cleared Rodriguez of any wrongdoing regarding the school shooting, but the department’s reported mishandling of the incident has impacted the effectiveness of high-ranking personnel.

One America News reported that “parents and family members affected by the tragedy” disagreed with the City Council’s decision not to dismiss Rodriguez and have pressed for a change in leadership.

On Tuesday, Chief Rodriguez announced his resignation. “After much contemplation and consideration, I believe it is time for me to embark on a new chapter in my career,” his resignation statement read.

ABC reported that Rodriguez submitted his resignation just hours before the Uvalde City Council announced the results of the city’s independent investigation into the shooting (which exonerated Rodriguez) and rejected requests for another third-party investigation.

Uvalde Mayor Cody Smith accepted his resignation, effective April 6, saying, “The city of Uvalde is grateful to Chief Rodriguez for his 26 years of service to our community and we wish him the best as he pursues new career opportunities.”

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