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Investigative Report, Body Cam Footage Reveal Damning Details from Uvalde Police Response



A total of 367 law enforcement officials responded to the shooting from several different local, state, and federal agencies.

Report Indicts Law Enforcement Response

An “overall lackadaisical approach” plagued by leadership confusion, communication breakdown, and system errors delayed the law enforcement response to the Uvalde massacre by over an hour, according to a 77-page preliminary report released by a Texas House investigative committee released on Sunday.

Ever since an 18-year-old gunman entered Robb Elementary and killed 19 fourth graders and two teachers on May 24, victims’ families have demanded answers and been met with authorities’ reluctant release of information.

“Law enforcement responders failed to adhere to their active shooter training, and they failed to prioritize saving innocent lives over their own safety,” the report said.

The shooter fired approximately 142 rounds inside the school, with at least 100 of those almost certainly occurring before police arrived, it added.

First responders lost “critical momentum” because they treated the gunman as a “barricaded subject” rather than an active shooter, leading them to take a slower, more methodical approach.

“Correcting this error should have sparked greater urgency to immediately breach the classroom by any possible means, to subdue the attacker, and to deliver immediate aid,” the report states.

Although much of the blame since the shooting has been directed toward Consolidated Independent School District Police Chief Pete Arredondo, the report aims its critique at every local, state, and federal agency present that day, saying no one assumed command of the situation despite the fact that 367 law enforcement officials arrived on the scene.

That resulted in some officers expressing a desire to enter the classroom but seeming unsure about who was in charge.

The report notes that Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training “teaches that any law enforcement officer can assume command, that somebody must assume command, and that an incident commander can transfer responsibility as an incident develops.”

The commander of a Border Patrol tactical team reportedly chose to wait for a bulletproof shield and a master key before entering the classroom, despite the door being unlocked, according to investigators.

Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin has launched an investigation to determine whether Lieutenant Mariano Pargas, who was the city’s acting police chief during the shooting, should have taken command of the scene. Pargas has been placed on administrative leave for the time being.

The report also faults issues with Robb Elementary itself, saying that poor WiFi likely delayed the lockdown alert after the shooting began.

Not all teachers immediately received the alert, it adds, and the school’s intercom was not used to communicate.

Additionally, the building’s doors and locks reportedly suffered from “recurring problems,” with the locking mechanism in Room 111, one of two where the shooting took place, having been widely known to be faulty yet never repaired.

The school also reportedly had a culture of noncompliance with safety policies requiring doors to be locked.

“There is no one to whom we can attribute malice or ill motives. Instead, we found systemic failures and egregiously poor decision making,” the report continued.

But the investigators added that it is not their job to recommend anyone be held accountable, leaving it to each law enforcement agency to determine that.

Body Cameras Show Police Inaction

Uvalde released around three hours of body camera footage to the press on Sunday, showing that many officers knew children were still alive in the classroom with the shooter, yet they failed to enter.

“Dude, we gotta get in there,” staff sergeant Eduardo Canales can be heard saying. “He’s still shooting. We gotta get in there.”

As minutes pass by with no direct confrontation between shooter and police, the officers’ sense of urgency appears to fade, and footage shows them hunkered down waiting for more backup.

As more gunshots are heard from inside the classroom and more heavily armed officers arrive on scene, Arredondo waited for keys to the room which investigators say was unlocked. He can also be seen on video struggling to unlock a nearby classroom that the shooter was not inside of.

“What are we doing here?” one officer asked 20 minutes after law enforcement arrived at the school.

“People are gonna ask why we’re taking so long,” another said nearly an hour later.

About 30 minutes after the shooting began, Uvalde police sergeant Daniel Coronado’s body cam shows him breaking a classroom window from outside the school and pulling kids out alongside other officers.

More than 12 minutes later, the footage shows Arredondo trying to negotiate with the shooter.

“Can you let me know if there’s any kids in there or anything?” The police chief shouts. “This could be peaceful. Could you tell me your name, anything I can know please?”

Moments later, a dispatcher can be heard telling officers via radio that a child had called 911 from the “room full of victims.”

Some officers react to the information with concern, but none enter the classroom.

At least six more minutes pass without officers engaging the shooter, then more gunshots are heard from inside the classroom.

Still, Arredondo attempts to negotiate with the gunman again, saying, “Sir, if you can hear me, please put your firearm down sir. We don’t want anybody else hurt.”

About 30 minutes later, officers finally enter the classroom and kill the gunman.

We make it a point to not include the names and pictures of those who may have been seeking attention or infamy and will not link out to websites that might contain such information.


Survey and Census Data Shows Record Number of Americans are Struggling Financially



Americans are choosing not to pursue medical treatment more and more frequently as they encounter money troubles.

A recent federal survey shows that a record number of Americans were worse off financially in 2022 than a year prior.

Coupled with recent census data showing pervasive poverty across much of the country, Americans are forced to make difficult decisions, like foregoing expensive healthcare. 

According to a recent Federal Reserve Bureau survey, 35% of adults say they were worse off in 2022 than 2021, which is the highest share ever recorded since the question was raised in 2014. 

Additionally, half of adults reported their budget was majorly affected by rising prices across the country, and that number is even higher among minority communities and parents living with their children.

According to recent census data, more than 10% of the counties in the U.S. are experiencing persistent poverty, meaning the area has had a poverty rate of 20% or higher between 1989 and 2019. 

16 states report at least 10% of their population living in persistent poverty. But most of the suffering counties were found in the South — which accounts for over half the people living in persistent poverty, despite making up less than 40% of the population. 

These financial realities have placed many Americans in the unfortunate situation of choosing between medical treatment and survival. The Federal Reserve study found that the share of Americans who skipped medical treatment because of the cost has drastically increased since 2020. 

The reflection of this can be found in the overall health of households in different income brackets. 75% of households with an income of $25,000 or less report being in good health – compared to the 91% of households with $100,000 or more income. 

See what others are saying: (Axios) (The Hill) (Federal Reserve)

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Montana Governor Signs TikTok Ban



The ban will likely face legal challenges before it is officially enacted next year. 

First Statewide Ban of TikTok

Montana became the first state to ban TikTok on Wednesday after Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) signed legislation aimed at protecting “Montanans’ personal and private data from the Chinese Communist Party.”

The ban will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2024, though the law will likely face a handful of legal challenges before that date. 

Under the law, citizens of the state will not be held liable for using the app, but companies that offer the app on their platforms, like Apple and Google, will face a $10,000 fine per day of violations. TikTok would also be subject to the hefty daily fine. 

Questions remain about how tech companies will practically enforce this law. During a hearing earlier this year, a representative from TechNet said that these platforms don’t have the ability to “geofence” apps by state.

Roger Entner, an analyst at Recon Analytics, told the Associated Press that app stores could have the capability to enforce the restriction, but it would be difficult to carry out and there would be a variety of loopholes by tools like VPNs.

Montana’s law comes as U.S. politicians have taken aim at TikTok over its alleged ties to the CCP. Earlier this year, the White House directed federal agencies to remove TikTok from government devices. Conservatives, in particular, have been increasingly working to restrict the app.

“The Chinese Communist Party using TikTok to spy on Americans, violate their privacy, and collect their personal, private, and sensitive information is well-documented,” Gov. Gianforte said in a Wednesday statement. 

Criticism of Montana Law

TikTok, however, has repeatedly denied that it gives user data to the government. The company released a statement claiming Montana’s law “infringes on the First Amendment rights of the people” in the state. 

“We want to reassure Montanans that they can continue using TikTok to express themselves, earn a living, and find community as we continue working to defend the rights of our users inside and outside of Montana,” the company said. 

The American Civil Liberties Union condemned Montana’s law for similar reasons. 

“This law tramples on our free speech rights under the guise of national security and lays the groundwork for excessive government control over the internet,” the ACLU tweeted. “Elected officials do not have the right to selectively censor entire social media apps based on their country of origin.”

Per the AP, there are 200,000 TikTok users in Montana, and another 6,000 businesses use the platform as well. Lawsuits are expected to be filed against the law in the near future.

See what others are saying: (Associated Press) (Fast Company) (CBS News)

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How a Disney-Loving Former Youth Pastor Landed on The FBI’s “Most Wanted” List



 “Do what is best, not for yourself, for once. Think about everyone else,” Chris Burns’ 19-year-old son pleaded to his father via The Daily Beast. 

Multi-Million Dollar Scheme 

Former youth pastor turned financial advisor Chris Burns remains at large since going on the run in September of 2020 to avoid a Securities Exchange Commission investigation into his businesses.

Despite his fugitive status, the Justice Department recently indicted Burns with several more charges on top of the $12 million default judgment he received from the SEC. 

Burns allegedly sold false promissory notes to investors across Georgia, North Carolina, and Florida. The SEC claims he told the investors they were participating in a “peer to peer” lending program where businesses that needed capital would borrow money and then repay it with interest as high as 20%. Burns allegedly also reassured investors that the businesses had collateral so the investment was low-risk. 

The SEC says that Burns instead took that money for personal use. 

Burns’ History 

Burns began his adult life as a youth pastor back in 2007 before transitioning into financial planning a few years later.  By 2017, he launched his own radio show, The Chris Burns Show, which was funded by one of his companies, Dynamic Money – where every week Burns would “unpack how this week’s headlines practically impact your life, wallet, and future,” according to the description. He also frequently appeared on television and online, talking about finances and politics. 

The SEC alleges that he used his public appearances to elevate his status as a financial advisor and maximize his reach to investors.

His family told The Daily Beast that he became obsessed with success and he reportedly bought hand-made clothes, a million-dollar lakehouse, a boat, several cars, and took his family on several trips to Disney World. His eldest son and wife said that Burns was paying thousands of dollars a day for VIP tours and once paid for the neighbors to come along. 

Then in September 2020, he reportedly told his wife that he was being investigated by the Securities Exchange Commission but he told her not to worry. 

The day that he was supposed to turn over his business documents to the SEC, he disappeared, telling his wife he was just going to take a trip to North Carolina to tell his parents about the investigation. Then, the car was found abandoned in a parking lot with several cashier’s checks totaling $78,000

FBI’s Most Wanted

The default judgment in the SEC complaint orders Burns, if he’s ever found, to pay $12 million to his victims, as well as over $650,000 in a civil penalty. Additionally, a federal criminal complaint charged him with mail fraud. Burns is currently on the FBI’s Most Wanted list. 

Last week, the Justice Department indicted him on several other charges including 10 counts of wire fraud and two counts of mail fraud. 

“Burns is charged for allegedly stealing millions of dollars from clients in an illegal investment fraud scheme,” Keri Farley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta, said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “Financial crimes of this nature can cause significant disruptions to the lives of those who are victimized, and the FBI is dedicated to holding these criminals accountable.”

His family maintains that they knew nothing of Burns’ schemes. His wife reportedly returned over $300,000 that he had given to her. 

She and their eldest son, who is now 19, told The Daily Beast they just want Burns to turn himself in, take responsibility for his actions, and try to help the people he hurt. 

“Do what is best, not for yourself, for once. Think about everyone else,” Burns’ son said in a message to his father via The Daily Beast. 

See what others are saying: (The Daily Beast) (Fox 5) (Wealth Management)

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