AUSTIN, Texas – 25 News joined a coalition of more than a dozen media organizations to file a lawsuit against the Texas Department of Public Safety for its alleged failure to release publicly available information.
The lawsuit, filed today in Travis County, alleges the agency denied numerous requests for public information, related to the Uvalde school massacre, or selectively released portions of requests, which, according to the DPS, “will not prejudice its investigation”.
25 News has filed at least six applications, some of which are being used as evidence in the trial, under the Texas Public Information Actbut our press team has been repeatedly informed that the agency cannot release this information as part of an ongoing investigation.
“The conflicting information provided by the DPS and its willingness to blame local law enforcement without addressing the conduct of its own officers has caused frustration, disbelief and confusion among community members in Uvalde,” the plaintiffs said in the lawsuit.
The plantiffs, including 25 Newsrequested information from the DPS, including 911 recordings, body camera footage, timelines, interview tapes and a list of DPS officers who responded to Robb Elementary on May 24.
DPS public information officials have repeatedly said the information in question is part of an ongoing criminal investigation despite Texas DPS Director Jim McCraw testifying before the Texas State Senate. Texas last month that the shooter acted alone in the massacre.
“DPS has sought to influence public opinion before, and cannot now claim that allowing the public to see the basis for these findings would in any way undermine a hypothetical prosecution,” the coalition of organizations said. media in the trial.
The Texas DPS had 91 law enforcement personnel in Uvalde during the massacre, second only to 149 U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents.
The full list of plaintiffs in the lawsuit includes: The Texas Tribune; ABC News; CBS News; Cable News Network, Inc.; Dow Jones & Co.; Gannett Co., Inc.; Graham Media Group, Houston; Graham Media Group, San Antonio; NBC News; The New York Times Co.; Pro Publica, Inc.; Scripps Media, Inc.; TEGNA Inc.; and the Washington Post.