At least one sniper shot 14 people, killing five police officers, in Dallas late Thursday night, turning a peaceful protest against the police shootings of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, into a scene of chaos and carnage.
The wounded include seven police officers and two civilians. It was the deadliest day for US law enforcement since the 9/11 attacks.
One suspect has been identified as Micah X. Johnson, according to the Associated Press. Johnson died after a standoff with police that lasted hours and ended when the police sent in a robot with a bomb and detonated it, killing him.
This is an ongoing breaking news story, meaning the facts are likely to change as events continue and new information emerges. Here's what we know, and what we don't, so far, according to official sources and media reports. This story will be continuously updated as long as events are unfolding.
What we know
- A few minutes before 9 pm local Dallas time, as the protest was ending, gunfire rang out.
- At least one sniper shot 12 police officers and two civilians from elevated positions along the protest route, according to Dallas police and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings.
- Five of those officers have died: 4 were Dallas Police Department officers and one was a Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) officer.
- The suspect killed in a standoff with police was Micah X. Johnson of Mesquite, Texas, according to the Associated Press and the Los Angeles Times. The US Army confirmed Johnson had been an enlisted soldier, who had served a tour in Afghanistan, the AP reported.
- Johnson was involved in an armed standoff with police that lasted for several hours. According to police, the standoff ended when police sent in a "bomb robot" and the resulting explosion killed the suspect.
- The 9 people who were injured do not have "life-threatening" injuries, according to Rawlings, and Dallas Police Chief David Brown stated that most of them have now been released from the hospital.
- Police and family have identified the five police officers who died: Brent Thompson, Michael Krol, Patrick Zamarripa, Lorne Ahrens, and Michael Smith. You can read more about them here.
- One civilian, a woman named Shetamia Taylor, was reportedly shot in the leg while trying to shield her children from gunfire. Another male civilian whose identity has not been released was also injured.
- Brown said that during the "negotiations" with the armed suspect, the suspect said he was "upset about Black Lives Matter" and recent police shootings. The suspect said he was "upset with white people" and that he "wanted to kill white people, especially white officers."
- Police are still looking for additional suspects and are not confident they have yet identified or located all of the individuals who may have been involved.
- Rawlings stated that downtown Dallas would still be considered "an active crime scene" going into Friday morning and urged people going to work downtown to check the city’s website for news updates on which areas to avoid.
- A video by a local NBC affiliate shows police cars rushing into the scene as gunshots are heard in the background.
- President Obama, who is in Poland for a NATO summit, made brief remarks early Friday morning, calling the shootings "a vicious, calculated, and despicable attack on law enforcement" and a "wrenching reminder of the sacrifices they make for us" on a daily basis. Though he did comment that "when people are armed with powerful weapons, it makes attacks like these more deadly and more tragic," he emphasized that "today, our focus is on the victims and their families."
What we don’t know
- How many shooters there were.
- The identities of all the suspects and victims.
- Whether all of the shooters have been apprehended.