Robb Elementary victim’s guardian arrested after calling out former Uvalde PD Mariano Pargas at county meeting

Brett Cross and other victims’ and survivors’ families showed up to the meeting demanding accountability

UVALDE – The guardian of Robb Elementary Uziyah Garcia was arrested Monday morning at the Uvalde County Commissioner’s Court meeting.

Brett Cross, a local activist for gun reform and accountability following the May 24 shooting, was speaking during a public comment portion of the meeting.

From the microphone, Cross addressed Commissioner Mariano Pargas, who was acting Uvalde police chief during the mass shooting.

Pargas retired from UPD following reports that he spoke with a 911 dispatcher on the day of the shooting and knew there was a room “full of victims” but did not act swiftly or communicate the knowledge to other law enforcement. Pargas’ inaction was also highlighted in a comprehensive DOJ report about failures by law enforcement in response to the shooting. Pargas won re-election to the commissioner’s court in 2022.

On Monday, Cross addressed Pargas’ lack of attendance at past meetings saying, “This is the first time you’ve shown up in 2024,” according to a video of Monday’s meeting on the county’s YouTube page.

Other families of victims and survivors were at the meeting as well, Cross continually gestured towards them while speaking to Pargas and calling the commissioner a coward.

“You got a phone call that there were 8 to 9 students still alive in that classroom and you walk the f--- away,” Cross said.

“All right if you’re gonna speak, watch your language,” said County Judge William Mitchell.

“Language, language, language... my child is f------ dead!” Cross shouted back.

At that point, Mitchell moved to have Cross removed from the meeting.

“Dead! And you have the balls and the gall to stand up here in front of everybody. I’m under arrest?” Cross said being led off camera.

Other people could be heard yelling as Cross was arrested, but they were not seen on camera.

Outside, Berlinda Arreola recorded video of Cross’s arrest as he was re-cuffed by a UPD officer.

“Tell me Brett, what was it that you said,” Arreola asked him.

“I said f--- and got arrested for saying f---,” Cross answered.

“And who were you speaking to when you said that?” Arreola asked.

“Mariano Pargas. And I’ll say it again, f*** him,” Cross said.

Uvalde PD Chief Daniel Rodriguez answered KSAT’s request for comment: “Uvalde Police Department responded at the request of the Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office. Once officers arrived, UCSO asked if we could transport Mr. Cross to the Uvalde County Justice Center, so we did.”

“Brent (sic) M. Cross was arrested on a class B misdemeanor for Disrupting Meeting or Procession,” Sheriff Ruben Nolasco told KSAT in an email. “Mr. Cross was released on a PR bond, earlier this afternoon.”

Read more reporting on the KSAT Investigates page.

About the Author

Leigh Waldman is a news reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

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