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Uvalde police lieutenant retires amid scrutiny from CNN report, city says

Uvalde's mayor had promised action against now-former UPD Lt. Mariano Pargas, who is also a county commissioner.

SAN ANTONIO — A senior member of the Uvalde Police Department has retired, city officials say, two days after a damning CNN report showed he knew several Robb Elementary students were still alive and in need of rescue on May 24, when a gunman entered the school and eventually killed 21

According to a city spokesperson, Pargas was eligible to retire after serving the city for 18 years. He was also recently elected to the Uvalde County Commissioners Court as a representative for Precinct 2, but was a no-show at Wednesday's regularly scheduled meeting. 

He was also expected to be fired at a special Saturday meeting which has now been cancelled. 

CNN recently obtained audio of a phone call that shows Pargas knew at least eight victims were still alive, but failed to act. He called Uvalde PD dispatchers to get more information after they relayed a call over police radio from 10-year-old Khloie Torres. 

In it, Khloie tells dispatchers the room is full of victims and begs for police to come into the classroom.

The phone call now shows, for the first time, that a senior officer was made aware of 911 calls from inside the classroom. It took more than 30 minutes after the phone call before the shooter was killed. 

During Wednesday's commissioner's court meeting, several parents expressed their frustration to the court, although Pargas wasn't there. He hasn't attended a meeting since the shooting took place.

"I'm just talking to a chair," Jesse Rizo, uncle of shooting victim Jackie Cazares  told KENS 5 it was metaphoric.

"[It's] an empty chair with an empty person. Even if he was there, he was probably empty," Rizo said its frustrating after he learned about the CNN report.

"For Khloie [Torres], when she saw that, she calls 911 for help and the message gets to [Pargas]...you sit there and you're like, 'how in the heck did this happen?' So absolutely, it rips your heart one more time," Rizo said.

Mayor Don McLaughlin promised action after the report's release, saying now-former Lt. Mariano Pargas would no longer be employed by the city. Pargas was acting police chief on the day of the shooting, and had been on leave since July.

"I think if we'd have had this, all this, and I think if we would have had your video and what we saw and everything we saw last night, I think Mariano would have been gone sooner, in my opinion," McLaughlin previously said. 

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