Meeting over Uvalde school police chief's future canceled

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In this May 26, 2022, photo, Uvalde School Police Chief Pete Arredondo, third from left, stands during a news conference outside of the Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. Facing massive public pressure, Uvalde’s top school official has recommended the firing of the school district police chief who was central to the botched law enforcement response to the shooting at an elementary school that killed two teachers and 19 students. The city’s school board will consider firing Arrendondo at a special meeting Saturday, July 23, to consider the superintendent's recommendation. (AP Photo/Dario Lopez-Mills, FILE) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

UVALDE, Texas (AP) — Uvalde school officials on Friday canceled a meeting to decide the future of embattled district Police Chief Pete Arredondo, who was facing the possibility of becoming the first officer to be fired over the slow law enforcement response to the Robb Elementary School massacre.

Arredondo's job was set to be discussed in an abruptly called school board meeting that was scheduled for Saturday. But in a statement Friday, the district said it had canceled the meeting at the request of Arredondo's attorney and because of “due process requirements.”

The district said the the police chief's potential firing would be considered later but did not specify when.

The reversal comes just two days after Uvalde's superintendent moved to fire Arredondo amid mounting public pressure and growing impatience in South Texas for accountability after police body camera footage and a damning new report revealed how officers waited in the school hallway for more than 70 minutes instead of confronting the gunman inside a fourth-grade classroom.

Nineteen children and two teachers were killed in the deadliest school shooting in Texas history.

The district said Arredondo will remain on unpaid administrative leave. So far, no officer has lost their job as a result of their actions or decisions during their May 24 tragedy.

Nearly 400 officers rushed to the scene of the school during the shooting, according to findings by a Texas House committee.

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