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UPDATE: Suspect In Fatal Shooting Of 5 Dallas Police Officers ID’d; Served In Army Reserve, Left Manifesto Behind

Another 7 police officers and 2 civilians were also hit by gunfire. About 25-blocks have been sealed off in downtown Dallas as police investigate the mass shooting, which is believed to be the deadliest day for law enforcement since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

UPDATE 5:25 p.m.: Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings says authorities believe a 25-year-old suspect in the attack that killed five police officers and wounded seven others was the lone attacker and that the city is safe.

Rawlings said at a news conference Friday that he believes the city can start healing now.

Police killed the suspect, Micah Xavier Johnson, using a robot-delivered bomb after they say negotiations with him failed. Two civilians also were wounded in the shooting following a peaceful protest against the killing of two black men by police in Minnesota and Louisiana.

Police previously said that they believed there were four suspects in elevated, triangulated positions along the parade route.

UPDATE 4:05 p.m.: Dallas police have confirmed the identity of the shooter they believe to be responsible for killing five police officers, shooting seven more and hurting two civilians.

Micah Johnson, 25, has no criminal history.

During the search of the suspect’s home in the suburb of Mesquite, detectives found bomb making materials, ballistic vests, rifles and ammunition. They also found a personal journal of combat tactics. Detectives are in the process of analyzing the information contained in the journal.

NPR says it has obtained from law enforcement sources what is being described as a manifesto from Johnson, which says it should be released after his death. Johnson points to police shootings of black Americans as a motivation, and criticizes the Black Lives Matter movement.

NPR is also reporting that evidence is pointing to Johnson acting alone — and he may have been planning the attack for some time. That’s according to law enforcement officials with knowledge of the investigation who have spoken with now tell NPR’s Dina Temple-Raston.

Below is the latest statement from Dallas police:

At this time, detectives have interviewed over 200 officers and it appears at least 12 officers discharged their duty weapons.

Resources from various federal, state, county and local law enforcement agencies such as the Bureau of  Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Marshals, Homeland Security Investigations, Drug Enforcement Administration, Department of Public Safety, Texas Rangers, Dallas Area Rapid Transit,  Dallas County District Attorney’s Office,  and the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department are all assisting with the investigation and the processing of evidence and  crime scene locations.  Portions of the crime scene locations in the downtown area will remain closed to the public until Wednesday. 

The deceased suspect has been identified as Micah Johnson, B/M/25.  The suspect has no criminal history.   Information   provided through the course of the investigation, indicates that the suspect was an Army veteran   and others have identified him as a loner.   The suspect’s Facebook account included the following names and information: Fahed Hassen, Richard GRIFFIN aka Professor Griff, GRIFFIN embraces a radical form of Afrocentrism, and GRIFFIN wrote a book A Warriors Tapestry.

During the search of the suspect’s home, detectives found bomb making materials, ballistic vests, rifles, ammunition, and a personal journal of combat tactics.  Detectives are in the process of analyzing the information contained in the journal.

In addition, Brandon Waller B/M/25 was arrested for unrelated weapons charges at the scene on July 7, 2016.

This is an ongoing investigation.  If anyone has information regarding the shootings, please call 214-671-3584.

We are so thankful for the overwhelming prayers, support, love, and donations from everyone.  Please continue to keep the families of the officers in your thoughts and prayers. Out of respect for the families of the fallen and injured officers, the Dallas Police Department is waiting to officially release their names pending approval from the family members.

Hundreds gather in downtown Dallas Friday for a prayer vigil for the five police officers killed and those hurt in a mass shooting Thursday night.
Hundreds gather in downtown Dallas Friday for a prayer vigil for the five police officers killed and those hurt in a mass shooting Thursday night.

UPDATE 1:03 p.m.: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott released an open letter Friday about the mass shooting in Dallas. The letter is published below:

“Our hearts are heavy.

Last night in Dallas, five law enforcement officers were killed; seven officers and two civilians were wounded.

The coordinated ambush and deliberate, brutal executions were acts of cowardice – hiding behind innocents to target and savagely slaughter peace officers dedicated to preserving life and our freedoms.

The full force of the law must ensure all responsible are brought to justice and our communities are kept secure.

Justice will be served, but justice is small solace for the families left behind.

We mourn for the families of the fallen, for the law enforcement community and for our nation.

Respect for our law enforcement officers must be restored in our nation.

The badge every officer wears over his or her heart is a reminder of a sacred trust, a commitment, a contract with each of us.

For law enforcement officers to stand in front of us and all that threatens, we must stand behind them.

Every life matters.

With each innocent life lost, we lose more of our humanity.

It is time for us to unite as Texans, as Americans, to say no more.

No more will we tolerate disrespect for those who serve.

No more will we allow the evil of hate merchants to tear us apart.

Though anguish and sorrow may darken the days ahead, we will not be overcome by evil – we will overcome evil with good.

Texas is an exceptional state with exceptional people. We’ve faced tough challenges in the past, but we have come together to overcome those challenges.

In the coming days, there will be those who foment distrust and fan the flames of dissension.

To come together – that would be the greatest rebuke to those who seek to tear us apart.

There is far more that binds us together. We see that great strength in times of tragedy, in times of great need. Whether fire or flood or the acts of depraved individuals, Texans are the first to open their hearts, their homes, their wallets to offer charity and love.

I ask for your prayers – for our law enforcement officers, for the city of Dallas, for our state and for our nation.

May God comfort those who’ve lost a family member.

And may God heal the hurt in our communities.

I have faith in the goodness of Texas, of America. For in the end, evil always fails.”

UPDATE 12:35 p.m.:  The Army says Micah Xavier Johnson, named as a suspect in the Dallas police shootings, served in the Army Reserve and did one tour of duty in Afghanistan.

A law enforcement official told the Associated Press that Johnson is the suspect who died in a lengthy overnight standoff with police. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he said he was not authorized to release the information.

The Army says Johnson was a private first class and his home of record is Mesquite, Texas. His military occupational specialty was carpentry and masonry. His service dates, as provided by the Army, are March 2009 to April 2015.

The Army says Johnson deployed to Afghanistan in November 2013 and returned in July 2014.

One of the organizers of the downtown Dallas protest where five police officers were shot and killed says he doesn’t recognize Johnson.

Pastor Jeff Hood said Friday that he had never heard of him.

Dallas Police Chief David Brown says the suspect in the standoff had told police he was acting alone and wasn’t affiliated with a group.

UPDATE 11:27 a.m.: A law enforcement official has told the Associated Press that the dead suspect in the shooting attack on Dallas police was 25-year-old Micah Johnson.

Dallas police killed the suspect with a robot-delivered bomb after hours of overnight negotiations in a parking garage had failed. The law enforcement official spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity because he said he was not authorized to release the information.

Dallas Police Chief David Brown said in a news conference earlier Friday that the suspect had told negotiators he was upset about recent police shootings and wanted to kill white people, particularly white officers. Brown did not name the suspect.

The suspect also told negotiators that he’d acted alone in the shooting and was unaffiliated with any group, Brown said. It remains unclear whether that was the case. Brown said other suspects were in custody but would not discuss those detentions.

Brown added that police still didn’t know if investigators had accounted for all participants in the attack.

Thursday’s fatal shooting began shortly before 9 p.m. when, police say, an uncertain number of snipers shot and killed five police officers, wounded seven more and injured two civilians at a downtown Dallas demonstration to protest the recent killings of black men by police in Louisiana, and Minnesota.

Little was immediately known about Johnson’s life or motives. A check of a commercial driver’s license listed an address for him in the Dallas suburb of Mesquite. Another person sharing his last name also was listed at that address, but it was immediately unclear whether they were related and still lived there.

On what appears to be Johnson’s Facebook page, photographs posted by a relative show him in a U.S. Army uniform and holding an unknown object as though it were a weapon.

Flags are at half-staff Friday at Dallas Police Headquarters. Four officers were killed in what's being described as an ambush.
Flags are at half-staff Friday at Dallas Police Headquarters. Four officers were killed in what’s being described as an ambush.

UPDATE 10:37 a.m.: U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch addressed shootings in Dallas. A transcript of her comments are below:

“Good morning, and thank you all for being here. 

Last night, at least five police officers were shot and killed, and several more were injured – along with two civilians – as they sought to protect a peaceful protest in Dallas, Texas.  Our thoughts and condolences go out to the families who have lost loved ones.  The Department of Justice – including the FBI, ATF, U.S. Marshals Service and U.S. Attorney’s Office – is working closely with our state and local counterparts, and we intend to provide any assistance we can to investigate this attack, and to heal a community that has been severely shaken and deeply scarred by an unfathomable tragedy.  This is an unfolding situation and we will provide additional information when it is available and appropriate. 

This has been a week of profound grief and heartbreaking loss.  The peaceful protest that was planned in Dallas last night was organized in response to the tragic deaths of Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota.  We have opened a civil rights investigation in Louisiana and we are providing assistance to local authorities in Minnesota who are leading the investigation there.  Today, we are feeling the devastating loss of Dallas Area Rapid Transit Officer Brent Thompson and four other fallen officers whose names remain unreleased as we await notification of all the families.  After the events of this week, Americans across the county are feeling a sense of helplessness, of uncertainty and of fear.  These feelings are understandable and they are justified.  But the answer must not be violence.  The answer is never violence.

Rather, the answer must be action: calm, peaceful, collaborative and determined action.  We must continue working to build trust between communities and law enforcement.  We must continue working to guarantee every person in this country equal justice under the law.  We must take a hard look at the ease with which wrongdoers can get their hands on deadly weapons and the frequency with which they use them.  We must reflect on the kind of country we want to build and the kind of society we want to pass on to our children.  We must reject the easy impulses of bitterness and rancor and embrace the difficult work of finding a path forward together.  Above all, we must remind ourselves that we are all Americans – and that, as Americans, we share not just a common land, but a common life.  Those we have lost this week have come from different neighborhoods and backgrounds – but today, they are mourned by officers and residents, by family and friends – by men and women and children who loved them, who needed them and who will miss them always.  They are mourned by all of us.

To the families of all who lost their lives in this series of tragedies, we share your pain and your loss.  To our brothers and sisters who wear the badge: I want you to know that I am deeply grateful for the difficult and dangerous work you do every day to keep our streets safe and our nations secure.  I am heartbroken at this loss.  And the Department of Justice will do all we can to support you in the days ahead.  To those who seek to improve our country through peaceful protest and protected speech: I want you to know that your voice is important.  Do not be discouraged by those who use your lawful actions as cover for their heinous violence.  We will continue to safeguard your constitutional rights and to work with you in the difficult mission of building a better nation and a brighter future.  And to all Americans: I ask you not to allow the events of this week to precipitate a “new normal” in our country.  I ask you to turn to each other, not against each other as we move forward.  And I urge you to remember, today and every day, that we are one nation.  We are one people.  And we stand together.  May God bless the families and loved ones of all who were taken from us this week.  And may God bless the United States of America.”

PREVIOUSLY:

Dallas police in a command post dealing with the aftermath of a mass shooting that killed at least five officers.
Dallas police in a command post dealing with the aftermath of a mass shooting that killed at least five officers.

UPDATE 9:17 a.m.: Dallas Area Rapid Transit Police Chief James Spiller says an officer who was fatally shot during a downtown Dallas protest was a newlywed whose bride also works for the police force. He described Officer Brent Thompson as a “courageous” and “great guy.”

Thompson was among five police officers killed during a Thursday night demonstration to protest police shooting deaths of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota. Seven other police officers were hit by gunfire, along with two civilians. Some of the officers have already been released from the hospital.

Spiller says Thompson got married two weeks ago. His wife, Emily, was not on duty at the protest.

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings says a bullet went straight through the leg of one police officer as snipers fatally shot three members of his squad during a protest in downtown Dallas.

Rawlings, who says he spoke to the wounded officer the officer expressed sorrow at his loss and that he felt “people don’t understand the danger of dealing with a protest.”

The mayor says it’s important to uphold the right of people to protest, but that more care needs to be taken to ensure the safety of police officers at such events.

UPDATE 8:07 A.M.: Police used an explosive attached to a robot was used to kill a suspect who was exchanging gunfire with police officers in a parking garage in downtown Dallas early Friday morning. The man is believed to be one of four suspects who shot at police officers from a high position in following the conclusion of a peaceful protest in downtown Dallas against recent killings of black men by police in Minnesota and Louisiana.

Dallas Police Chief David Brown said the suspect was “upset at Black Lives Matter” and “upset at white people” and wanted to kill police officer, especially white ones. The suspect also claimed that police would eventually find the “IEDs” or explosive devices that he planted around the city. The man said he was acting alone, Brown said.

Both the chief and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings declined to give any more details about two men and a woman who are in custody and whom police believe are linked to the shooting of 11 Dallas police officers and one civilian. Five of the officers have died.

“We’re not satisfied we’ve exhausted every lead,” the chief said.

Brown said some officers who were shot have been released from the hospital, while others would need more treatment. He declined to give any more details.

“There are no words to describe the atrocity that occurred in our city,” the chief said.

PREVIOUSLY: Eleven Dallas police officers were shot — five fatally — Thursday night as a peaceful protest over this week’s fatal police shootings of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota was wrapping up. Dallas Police Chief David Brown characterized the shootings as a sniper attack by at least four suspects.

Three of the suspects are in custody. A fourth died after exchanging gunfire with police in the parking garage of El Centro College in downtown Dallas. He was reported dead at about 3 a.m. Friday after being cornered shortly after the shooting and telling police: “The end is near.”

At least one civilian was shot and is expected to survive. A sister of 37-year-old Shetamia Taylor says Taylor was at the protests Thursday night with her four sons, ages 12 to 17. Theresa Williams says that when the shooting began, Taylor threw herself over her sons. She was undergoing surgery early Friday after being shot in the right calf.

Video posted on social media show a chaotic scene in downtown Dallas Thursday night as protesters scattered for safety while officers ran towards the gunfire.

The Dallas Police Department's Twitter Profile Photo on Friday morning following the shooting of 11 officers in the city.
The Dallas Police Department’s Twitter Profile Photo on Friday morning following the shooting of 11 officers in the city.

A 25-block area has been sealed off in downtown Dallas as police investigate the mass shooting, which is believed to be the deadliest day for law enforcement since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The gunfire started at about 8:58 p.m. Thursday following a peaceful protest in which hundreds of people were gathered.

Live TV video showed protesters along a street in downtown–about half a mile from City Hall–when the shots were fired and the crowd scattered, seeking cover.

Scores of police and security officers were on hand. Police and others hunched behind cars outside a parking garage. Officers with guns drawn were running near and into the parking garage as police searched for the shooter.

One woman was taken into custody near the college garage were the standoff with police took place. Two other suspects were pulled over after speeding away from the area following the shooting, Chief Brown said.

Brown has said that police believe there were four suspects in elevated, triangulated positions along the parade route.

Four of the dead officers are from the Dallas Police Department and one from DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transit)–the region’s public transit system. He has been identified as 43-year-old Brent Thompson, who joined the DART Police Department in 2009.

Slain DART Police Officer Brent Thompson.
Slain DART Police Officer Brent Thompson.

DART says he’s the first officer killed in the line of duty since the agency formed a police department in 1989. The statement says “our hearts are broken.”

DART says the other three DART police officers shot during the protest are expected to recover from their injuries.

President Barack Obama says America is “horrified” over the shootings of police officers in Dallas and there’s no possible justification for the attacks.

Obama is speaking from Warsaw, Poland, where he’s meeting with leaders of the European Union and attending a NATO summit.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott will be heading to Dallas today. He has offered any assistance from the State that the City of Dallas needs.

This story will be updated as more details become available.

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