DoJ to Review Police Response to Texas School Shooting

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The Facts

  • On Sun., the US Dept. of Justice announced that it will investigate the response of law enforcement officers to the mass shooting at the Robb elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, which left 19 children and two teachers dead.

  • "The Critical Incident Review" will provide an "independent account" of the actions and responses of authorities, and "identify lessons learned and best practices" for responding to shooter events, according to a spokesman from the justice department.

The Spin

Narrative A

The parents and children of Uvalde were utterly failed by authorities. Every second counts in shooter situations, and the delayed response by police almost certainly cost lives. Police conduct during the response - which ran contrary to well-established active shooter protocol - demands scrutiny and accountability.

Narrative B

While the police's actions were clearly a botched incident response, there is no statute that holds them liable for the deaths. This wasn't a matter of bad policy that needs reforming; it was a simple case of the chief of police making an incorrect assessment about the shooter, leading to incorrect tactics being followed. While the consequences were tragic, there was no intentional deprivation of civil rights.

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