The findings of an investigation into the Texas school shooting that claimed the lives of 19 children and two adult teachers when a gunman methodically slaughtered them in their Uvalde elementary school classroom have been released, and the multiple failures of law enforcement are already being picked over by former government officials who are now employed by the media.
On Sunday, the report by a Texas House of Representatives investigative committee was released and was harshly critical of the ineffective police response, painting a damning picture of chaos and poor communication among multiple agencies that responded to the shooting with nearly 400 officers on the scene by the time the bloody incident ended.
CNN’s Shimon Prokupecz said that the blame should be placed on “every law enforcement agency” that responded to the shooting, in total, there were probably over 300, perhaps close to 400 law enforcement officials on scene by the end of the shooting. And what we learned is that there were 149 Border Patrol agents. That is a significant number. Ninety-one state troopers. Those are the Department of Public Safety, the Texas state troopers. And then 25 Uvalde police officers, and there were U.S. Marshals on scene, and there were DEA agents on scene. There were a lot of law enforcement agents and officials on scene,” he said.
Later, on Sunday’s edition of “CNN Newsroom” former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe along with former Obama administration DHS official Juliette Kayyem, both of who now draw paychecks from the self-proclaimed “most trusted name in news,” discussed the report and the chaotic law enforcement response with Kayyem suggesting that there is a need for consolidation of police departments.
“Juliette, among the 20 agencies we know border patrol was one of the federal agencies that was part of this you know, consortium of law enforcement agencies that were there,” CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield asked Kayyem.”In what way do you see the federal government will play a role in assessing what went wrong here, what will be the better approach so that all these agencies would be able to coordinate and work together, heaven forbid something like this is to happen again?”
“Well from the report, you do get the sense because they did interview a lot of these law enforcement agents,”Kayyem responded. “You do get the sense that a lot of them did know better. I mean in other words they kind of knew that this was probably not legitimate a performance, obviously, that’s an understatement, but that the incident command system had broken down from the beginning, that you just didn’t have leadership.”
“So one of the things is obviously how do you assert authority?” Kayyem continued. “Why did the federal agents not feel like they could? Part of that is a strong deferential allegiance to the local first responders and then state, then federal, just the way we think about it so how would we, in those instances where you do have a breakdown of local command authority, what would trigger the federal response?”
She added, “I also think that there is a, it’s not stated directly but one of the things that when we say there’s 20 law enforcement agencies in this small little community in Texas, one of the reasons why training, even though we know what it is and what it should be, one of the reasons training is failing is because honestly, we have too many police departments in this country.”
“You have a school district police department that is asserting its own authority, it has its own incident command, there are six members of it so one thing to think about is does each small school district actually need its own school department in which they rely on a totally different jurisdiction from, say, the locals because, remember, here you have a separate local police department,” she said.
“I can understand for a place like L.A. or New York where you have hundreds of thousands of facilities, but thinking ways in which we can rethink what’s again architecture and structure, what happened because that original breakdown, once again, cannot be overcome over the course of an hour,” Kayyem continued. “No one asserts the incident command post, no one asserts incident command and nobody says this is broken. This is just absolutely broken.”
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