Police Chief Pete Arredondo keeps trying to explain why everything went wrong during the department’s response to the May 24th mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
He should stop. The more he talks the more his entire department looks like the cast of Dumb and Dumber. Every word he utters makes it worse.
His latest excuse is that no one told him he was in charge.
I’m not sure why a police chief would need to be told he’s, well, the chief. But never mind that.
Arredondo says he entered the school without his radio. On purpose. He got to the classroom where the shooter was and found it locked from the inside. He was unable to kick the door open, given it was a security door.
So he called for backup with his cell phone. Some more officers entered the building with tools to force open the door, but still couldn’t get the door open. Someone also produced a key, but it didn’t open the door. Someone else brought in another key. That one didn’t work either. So they spent 40 minutes trying dozens of different keys and trying to force the door open.
Arredondo says he didn’t think he was in command and that he did not issue any orders not to enter the building, but without his radio he didn’t know what was going on.
Wait a sec: He had a cell phone. People were entering and exiting with tools and keys. In 40 minutes no one gave him updated info? He never thought to call and ask? Or ask someone to go get his radio? Why did no one have a key?
Are these unfair questions? The Uvalde police department and other agencies who ignored more than one warning about the shooter, and they couldn’t have handled the situation more badly if they tried. Why aren’t we holding them accountable? Why are we arguing about gun control instead?