Families of Uvalde school shooting, victims call for DPS director’s resignation

Grieving parents confront DPS head

UVALDE, Texas – During a meeting of the state’s Public Safety Commission, the head of the Texas Department of Public Safety faced withering criticism from family members of murdered children.

All called for the resignation of DPS Director Steve McCraw.

“Are you a man of your word?” Brett Cross asked McCraw.

“Absolutely,” McCraw said.

“Then resign,” Cross fired back.

Cross, whose son Uziyah Garcia was murdered during the mass shooting, was one of several parents calling for McCraw’s resignation. Many said the state troopers who responded to the school failed to act or take charge of the stuttered response.

“You sir, have told lies. You’re not in control of your officers, nor are you the leader this great state deserves at the helm of what was once known as one of the best law enforcement agencies,” said Cross.

Others criticized McCraw for releasing contradictory information in the days following the massacre.

“You basically lit a match and you set the town on fire,” said Jesse Rizo. “Our town is divided, our teachers feel betrayed, and some families don’t speak to each other.”

McCraw agreed mistakes were made by individual troopers, but defended himself by stating DPS as a whole was not at fault.

“I can tell you this right now, DPS as an institution, ok, right now, did not fail the community,” said McCraw.

State Sen. Roland Gutierrez (D-Dist. 19) stood with the families and again pointed out that state troopers were on the scene within minutes of the shooter entering the school.

“DPS failed on May 24. It failed to take control of a dangerous situation. It failed to neutralize a threat,” said Gutierrez, who also called for McCraw’s resignation.

The commission oversees DPS, and an agenda item for Thursday’s meeting included an update on the investigation into the police response to the mass shooting.

No new information was presented, but McCraw told commissioners the Ranger’s investigation into the police response would be complete in two months. He said the findings would then be given to the District Attorney’s Office for review.

After the meeting concluded, US Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Tx. Dist. 23), whose area includes Uvalde, sent a Tweet reading, “DPS Director McCraw should resign immediately.”

About the Author:

Award winning investigative journalist who joined KPRC 2 in July 2000. Husband and father of the Master of Disaster and Chaos Gremlin. “I don’t drink coffee to wake up, I wake up to drink coffee.”