More than a dozen major news organizations are suing the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) for failing to release public records related to the shooting at Robb elementary school in Uvalde that left 19 children and two teachers dead. The lawsuit comes after reporters were denied over 70 requests surrounding the shooting under the Texas Public Information Act. Among the news outlets in in the lawsuit are the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Texas Tribune, ABC, NBC, CBS and CNN, The Guardian reports. Although DPS selectively released information through press conferences and reports, it refused to disclose records of call logs, body camera footage, interview notes and other files to the press, saying the investigation was ongoing.
While some exceptions to records requests are allowed, news organizations argue the investigation is no longer continuing since it was declared the 18-year old gunman was guilty and acted alone. There are conflicting accounts of what happened that day. One disputed narrative that emerged was from a DPS commissioned report from the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (Alerrt), which stated an officer saw the shooter outside of the school and failed to act because he was awaiting a directive from his supervisor. Uvalde mayor Don McLaughlin later claimed that it was not the shooter the officer saw, but a coach with children on the playground. The lawsuit seeks to force DPS to produce all requested records related to the Uvalde shooting so that the public can understand what really happened that day.