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Uvalde superintendent explains why district nixed review of school police department's response to Robb shooting

Parents and victims' relatives had called the decision a slap in the face.

SAN ANTONIO — Uvalde CISD interim superintendent Gary Patterson apologized to parents Monday for "confusion" about a third-party review of UCISD PD's response to the shooting at Robb Elementary. 

The district twice told grieving parents an independent firm, JPPI, was investigating school police officers' actions. 

"As previously stated, JPPI is conducting an investigation into the UCISD police officers' response to the May 24, 2022 tragedy," the district said in an October press release. "Results of the investigation will inform future personnel decisions."  

But Patterson said Monday the district never engaged with the firm. 

"We never signed anything with JPPI and never paid JPPI anything," he added. 

It's not clear why school officials publicized the non-existent investigation, then. Patterson, who took over as interim superintendent weeks after the district issued the press release, acknowledged the message was "confusing." 

The city of Uvalde hired JPPI to review its officers' responses to the tragedy. That investigation is stalled because the Uvalde district attorney will not release body camera video and other material related to the case. 

The city is suing the district attorney for access to those records. 

A JPPI representative warned school leaders the firm would not be able to help UCISD until those records became available, Patterson said. 

The interim superintendent also questioned whether another review would be valuable, since the findings would likely overlap with four other independent investigations already underway or complete. 

"The information we have is quite extensive," Patterson said. 

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