Exclusive: Officer being investigated over Uvalde response gave order to delay classroom breach – CNN
A Texas state police captain tried to delay a law enforcement team from entering the school after the shooting. News sources have obtained new audio of Capt. Joel Betancourt ordering a strike team to wait, more than 70 minutes into the attack.
Memos written just two days after the May 24 massacre show that no action was taken against the gunman or to help those trapped with him.
Betancourt was interviewed multiple times by investigators after the shooting and has since been referred for further investigation by the DPS inspector general. Betancourt told investigators he had no first-hand knowledge of the shooting and ordered the team to stand by while a better unit was on its way.
The memos and audio reviewed by reporters reveal that the school district police chief did not see himself as the incident commander. Two police officers have told investigators they were told not to enter the school after the shooting, but have not said when they received that message.
Seven DPS officers are under investigation for the massacre. Betancourt’s involvement has been confirmed. Betancourt told investigators he was in Eagle Pass, Texas, when the shooting call came in, but it was unclear how major the situation was.
Betancourt told investigators he assumed Uvalde Sheriff Ruben Nolasco was the on-scene commander, but then thought school district police chief Pedro “Pete” Arredondo was.
Betancourt said he did not talk to anyone about the classrooms being closed, and issued the order to “stand by” based on information from Nolasco. Betancourt said he focused on clearing the crime scene and setting up a command post after the shooting and did not initially know there were any children in the building.
For more insight on this pending investigation, please consider the news outlets below to stay in the know.
- Exclusive: Officer being investigated over Uvalde response gave order to delay classroom breach CNN
- Why the Truth About Uvalde May Not Be Known for Years, If Ever Texas Monthly
- Report: DPS captain gave order to wait to enter classrooms during Robb Elementary shooting KXAN
- DPS captain reportedly ordered officers not to enter Robb Elementary 70 minutes into shooting response KSAT San Antonio