Orange County Sheriff to join team of experts in DOJ review of Uvalde mass shooting response

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Orange County Sheriff John Mina will join a team of experts tasked with assessing the law enforcement response to the mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas on May 24.

Each member of the team was chosen for their experience in emergency management, active shooter response, and school safety.

READ: 11-year-old who survived Uvalde shooting testifies before House panel

On Wednesday, the Department of Justice announced the next steps in their review of the shooting in which 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary school were killed by a single gunman.

Led by the DOJ’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), the team will reconstruct the incident by going back to the site and interviewing witnesses, parents, and law enforcement who responded to the scene.

In a statement, the DOJ said the goal of the review was to “provide an independent account of law enforcement actions and responses; identify lessons learned and best practices to help first responders prepare for and respond to active shooter events; and provide a roadmap for community safety and engagement before, during, and after such incidents.”

READ: Texas school shooting: Families of students injured in Uvalde take legal action

The team says they will move as quickly as possible, but couldn’t say just how long the review is expected to take.

“Nothing can undo the pain that has been inflicted on the loved ones of the victims, the survivors, and the entire community of Uvalde,” U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement. “But the Justice Department can and will use its expertise and independence to assess what happened and to provide guidance moving forward.”

The team gathered for its first meeting Wednesday around a conference table in Garland’s office, with a few of the members appearing virtually on a large television screen.

READ: Lake County therapy dogs headed to Uvalde to help community recover from school shooting

Garland said the review would be comprehensive, transparent and independent.

The teams’ findings and recommendations will be detailed in a report, which will be made public, Garland said.

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Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler, WFTV.com

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.