City of Uvalde gets its report on police performance at Robb Elementary

It landed with a thud.

A city-commissioned independent review of Uvalde police’s response to the Robb Elementary School shooting cleared local officers of wrongdoing, infuriating parents of the 19 children killed in the massacre and at least two city council members who rebuked the report after it was released Thursday.

City officials hired private investigator Jesse Prado, a retired Austin police detective, to conduct the review into the response from the city’s police department to the May 24, 2022 mass shooting that also resulted in the deaths of two teachers and injured 17 others.

The findings of the report were presented in a question-and-response format with Prado at a city council meeting and the actual 182-page report was released later Thursday after city officials shared it with families. Prado said the review identified training, communication and leadership lapses, but he also commended some of the city’s officers and characterized their actions as in “good faith” — contradicting findings of previous audits by state and federal officials.

Those reviews have illustrated a catastrophic law enforcement failure in which children remained trapped with the gunman for more than an hour as nearly 400 law enforcement officers arrived at the school and encountered a chaotic scene without leadership.

Several people walked out of the impromptu council chambers roughly 40 minutes in when Prado said one of the issues that police encountered was crowd control. Some families tried to breach police tape to run into the school and try rescuing their children, some of whom ultimately died while others had called their parents and 911 pleading for help.

Following the presentation and right before the public hearing, Prado left.

Kimberly Mata-Rubio, whose daughter Lexi was among the children killed, slammed a podium in the civic center and in between tears demanded that Prado return to the meeting. A crowd then began chanting, “Bring him back!” One person shouted, “Coward.”

Prado returned five minutes later and sat with an expressionless face, underneath a big white cowboy hat he did not once remove, for the following hour as relatives of those killed castigated him and dismissed his audit as “bullshit,” “a joke” and disrespectful.

“They chose their lives over the lives of children and teachers, and there’s no policy change [that] will eliminate their fear,” Mata-Rubio said in calling for the firing of three officers who remain on the city’s police force.

Brett Cross, whose son Uziyah was killed by the shooter, approached the podium with AJ Martinez, one of the children who survived the shooting.

“I want you to look at this child,” Cross said. “Good faith for 77 minutes? The true heroes are those that passed, those teachers, the survivors are heroes.”

After the public speakers, City Council members echoed the disbelief in the report’s findings and how it was unveiled. One said he wished that Prado had actually presented the report himself and just given copies to families instead of the questioning method that resembled a court hearing.

“For you to come in here and say ‘No, everything was hunky-dory, they did their job,’ I can’t accept that,” Councilmember Hector Luevano said to applause. Luevano, and several other council members, had not reviewed the report prior to the meeting. “I’m insulted by this report. The families deserve more, the community deserves more.”

Apologizing to the crowd, Councilmember Ernest “Chip” King III said Thursday’s presentation was not how the city wanted the information to be released.


Prado said the lack of cooperation from Uvalde County District Attorney Christina Mitchell hindered the investigation. In December 2022, the city sued Mitchell over her refusal to produce documents. The district attorney agreed to hand over some, but not all, of the information Prado requested.

Mitchell did not respond Thursday to a request for comment.

Prado also said the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District stopped cooperating with him after a few months into his investigation. The city reportedly paid him nearly $100,000 for his work.

See here, here, and here for some background; there’s a ton more if you want to keep reading. I genuinely don’t know what to say other than I figure there will be a lawsuit filed by someone against Prado to get his fee back. I have to wonder just how much the city vetted this guy, and whether there was a clear understanding between him and the city about what exactly they were looking for. I’m just stunned. TPR and the Current have more.

Related Posts:

This entry was posted in Crime and Punishment and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to City of Uvalde gets its report on police performance at Robb Elementary

  1. Flypusher says:

    Should anyone be surprised? The sheriff got reelected and Uvalde voted overwhelmingly for Abbott. There’s still not enough desire to hold people in office accountable for failures.

  2. Given that it was obviously an active shooter incident, I can’t understand how the consultant could exonerate the officers who first responded to the scene. They arrived within the first minutes and the suspect was still firing his weapon. In an active shooter scenario, the officers’ first duty is to engage and eliminate the shooter (protect innocent lives). Creating and securing a perimeter, waiting for backup, evacuating the surrounding area, etc. are secondary duties. An active shooter cannot be allowed to continue to shoot/kill victims while police officers retreat to safety. This was not a barricaded suspect who might harm someone. This was an active shooter in the act of killing people.

  3. Bill says:

    The sheriff and pretty much every LEO who showed up and did nothing should all have resigned in disgrace. And Greg Abbott should have resigned in disgrace over his appointees’ failure during the Winter storm power outages. They managed to screw over every single electric rate payer in Texas, literally for years, over their mismanagement. Shame is sorely lacking in Texas. I don’t see how those cops can walk around in public, or even be effective at their jobs. Imagine one of the parents of the dead getting stopped for speeding by one of them.

    I myself, had never voted Abbott before (or Dubya, for that matter), generally voting Libertarian, but held my queasy stomach and voted for Abbott for the first time, in 2022, because I feared a Gov. Beto so much. Had Dems run someone in the vein of Ann Richards, I would have voted for that person to punish Abbott for what his appointees did to Texas.

Comments are closed.