Texas House committee begins investigating Uvalde school shooting, police response to the tragedy

19 children and two adults were killed in the Robb Elementary School shooting on May 24

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A special Texas House of Representatives committee began investigating the Robb Elementary School shooting on Thursday as questions continue to swirl about the police response to the tragedy. 

The investigation is being led by Rep. Dustin Burrows, a Republican from Lubbock; Rep. Joe Moody, a Democrat from El Paso; and former Texas Supreme Court Judge Eva Guzman. 

House Speaker Dade Phelan, who announced the formation of the committee last week, said the team has subpoena power and will conduct depositions. 

Visitors walk around outside the Texas State Capitol building on July 12, 2021, in Austin, Texas.

Visitors walk around outside the Texas State Capitol building on July 12, 2021, in Austin, Texas. (Sergio Flores/Getty Images)

"The fact we still do not have an accurate picture of what exactly happened in Uvalde is an outrage," Phelan said on June 3. 

"Every day, we receive new information that conflicts with previous reports, making it not only difficult for authorities to figure out next steps, but for the grieving families of the victims to receive closure."

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The committee held brief opening states on Thursday morning before going into executive session to start questioning witnesses behind closed doors. 

"The people of Uvalde — and the entire State of Texas — deserve facts and answers as to what happened leading up to, during, and in the aftermath of this tragedy, and this committee will do everything in its power to get to the bottom of the matter," Rep. Burrows said Thursday morning, according to the Dallas Morning News. 

Texas Department of Public Safety Steven McCraw, who has blamed the Uvalde school police chief for making the "wrong decision" not to immediately confront the gunman, was among the law enforcement officials present at the hearing on Thursday. 

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Law enforcement gave conflicting information about the response to the shooting in the days and weeks following the tragedy, including whether a school resource officer was on scene, whether a door that the shooter entered was closed, how quickly police confronted the shooter, and whether the suspect was wearing body armor. 

A Texas Senate committee is also investigating the response to the shooting, as well as the Department of Justice