Uvalde, Texas – New questions are emerging about Uvalde schools Police Chief Peter Arredondo a week after a gunman massacred 19 fourth graders and two teachers at Robb Elementary.
In a statement to CBS News Tuesday, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) said, “The Uvalde Police Department and Uvalde [school district] Police have been cooperating with investigators. The chief of the Uvalde [school district] Police provided an initial interview but has not responded to a request for a follow-up interview with the Texas Rangers that was made two days ago. ”
However, in a statement to CNN on Wednesday, Arredondo said he is “in touch with DPS everyday.”
It was Arredondo who ordered officers to remain outside the classroom where the gunman was holed up during the siege.
Questions are being asked about why Arredondo was in a position to make that decision and why he chose what he did, CBS Dallas reports.
Agents from US Customs and Border Protection ultimately breached the classroom area and fatally shot the suspect more than an hour after the shooter entered the building.
Texas DPS Director Steven McCraw said that during the time law enforcement was waiting to breach the classroom, children pleaded on the phone with 911 operators to send in police.
Arredondo was elected to the Uvalde City Council on May 7 and was sworn in on Tuesday. “Out of respect for the families who buried their children today, and who are planning to bury their children in the next few days, no ceremony was held,” Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin said in a statement.
Following reports that Arredondo wouldn’t be sworn in, McLaughlin said in a statement on Monday that “there is nothing in the City Charter, Election Code, or Texas Constitution that prohibits him from taking the oath of office. To our knowledge, we are currently not aware of any investigation by Mr. Arredondo. “
It wasn’t clear whether the law allows Arredondo to hold both posts and whether he would.
Meanwhile Uvalde has begun to bury its dead.
The first two children who lost their lives were laid to rest Tuesday. Amerie Jo Garza and Maite Rodriguez, both 10, were fourth grade classmates.
A funeral will be held Wednesday for one of the two teachers slain in the attack. Irma Garcia will be buried along with her husband, Joe, who died of a heart attack two days after the shooting. Family members say he succumbed to a broken heart.
The funeral for 10-year-old Jose Flores will also be held Wednesday.