UVALDE, Texas — Uvalde CISD has scheduled a hearing to fire Police Chief Pete Arredondo, who has faced heavy criticism for law enforcement's failed response to the Robb Elementary shooting.
Trustees met behind closed doors Monday evening to discuss matters related to the termination hearing for Arredondo, which has now twice been postponed. The meeting will be held on August 24 at 5:30 p.m., and will be open to the public.
Superintendent Hal Harrell last month recommended that Arredondo be fired. Many in the community, including family members of the victims, want him removed from his post.
Both Uvalde residents and state officials said Arredondo could have done more to save those killed in the May 24 massacre, where 19 children and two teachers were killed by an 18-year-old gunman.
Texas DPS identified the chief as the on-scene commander, and he made the decision to treat the situation as a barricaded suspect, not an active shooter. Even as children called 911 from inside the classroom with the shooter, heavily armed law enforcement waited to breach the room for over an hour.
The agenda item for Monday's meeting, which begins at 7 p.m., specifically says executive-session discussion will include "attorney consultation" regarding a termination hearing, including "procedural rules" and "updates on legal issues surrounding Robb Elementary property."
Legally, the district cannot terminate Arredondo's contract without first detailing their reasons for firing him and allowing him to defend himself.
This meeting has been pushed back several times, with Arredondo's lawyer omre recently citing a scheduling conflict.
Arredondo has been on unpaid administrative leave since July 22, and will remain there for the time being. He has already stepped down from his seat on Uvalde City Council after winning his election shortly before the shooting. He did not attend any meetings before resigning.
Texas law enforcement regulators said they had received almost daily emails demanding that Arredondo’s policing license be revoked, but officials say it isn’t that simple under state law. One complication is that Arredondo’s firing, should it be approved, would have to be categorized as either an honorable, general or dishonorable discharge.