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Uvalde police chief who was on vacation during Robb Elementary School shooting resigns

A memorial in front of Robb Elementary School.
Kayla Padilla
The resignation came days after an investigator contracted by the City of Uvalde found that police acted in "good faith" while responding to the shooting.

Uvalde Police Chief Daniel Rodriguez announced his resignation Tuesday just hours before the Uvalde City Council was scheduled to hear comment on a report that cleared local officers of wrongdoing in the Robb Elementary School shooting.

Rodriguez was on vacation when the shooting happened. Lieutenant Mariano Pargas filled in for him, and was named in the Department of Justice incident review as not having incident command training.

The announcement came days after an investigator contracted by the City of Uvalde found that police acted in good faith and did not violate protocol on the day of the shooting — despite the fact that 376 officers from several law enforcement agencies took 77 minutes to kill the gunman and did not follow active shooter protocol. Nineteen children and two teachers were killed in the shooting on May 24, 2022.
Rodriguez did not say why he’s resigning, but did say he was “moving onto a new chapter” in his resignation letter.

"It's the coward’s way out," said Brett Cross, who lost his 10-year-old son Uziyah in the shooting. Cross and other victims family members have been pressing for accountability since the shooting.

Cross addressed the council, which did not answer pointed questions about Uvalde's investigative report. Uvalde Mayor Cody Smith did say that the council would need more time to assess the report following Rodriguez's resignation.

In a statement, Smith thanked Rodriguez for his service. He added that Assistant Chief of Police Homer Delgado will be named the Interim Chief of Police as the city looks for a replacement.

“Nothing is more important than the safety of our community, and we look forward to working together to identify the best candidate to serve the people of Uvalde.”

Rodriguez’s resignation will take effect April 6th.

"It's been almost two years and we're right back to where we started. Same old place, same old thing, same old response," said Jesse Rizo, the uncle of Jackie Cazares, a 9-year-old killed in the shooting. "Do not drag this out any more. It will not go away. You're never going to let people heal this way. You take Daniel's resignation — well overdue — and what does Daniel do today? He doesn't show up. Just like those officers that day."

Copyright 2024 Texas Public Radio. To see more, visit Texas Public Radio.

Kayla Padilla
Dan Katz is the news director of Texas Public Radio in San Antonio.
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