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Dora Mendoza, centre right, a grandmother of Amerie Jo Garza, is comforted by a woman at a memorial site in Uvalde PA
uvalde shooting

Police chief not told of children's calls during Uvalde shooting: state senator

The 911 calls ‘were not being communicated to the so-called incident commander’, Senator Roland Gutierrez told a news conference

THE POLICE CHIEF in charge of operations at the Texas elementary school where a gunman murdered 21 people was not informed of desperate calls made by children trapped inside, a state senator said today.

The 911 calls “were not being communicated to the so-called incident commander,” Senator Roland Gutierrez told a news conference, referring to the school district’s police chief, Pete Arredondo.

“There is human error, there is system error,” Gutierrez said, adding it was unclear exactly who all was receiving the calls, but that he had been told it was only the Uvalde city police.

Officers have come under intense criticism over why they waited more than an hour to neutralize the gunman after arriving at the school. Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) director Steven McCraw has admitted that delaying was the “wrong decision.”

Gutierrez said: “We need to know what law enforcement was doing, what radio procedures were followed and not followed.”

“We have all failed. There’s been a lot of failure here,” the senator said.

The US Department of Justice said on Sunday that it would investigate the law enforcement response in Uvalde and issue a report.

Investigators continue to seek answers about how police responded to the shooting, and the US department of justice is reviewing law enforcement actions.

Authorities said the shooter legally bought two guns not long before the school attack: an AR-style rifle on 17 May and a second rifle on 20 May.

He had just turned 18, permitting him to buy the weapons under federal law.

Additional reporting from PA

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