The Big Conversation
Downtown Dallas erupted into chaos late Thursday night when at least five police officers were shot and killed and another six were injured by two snipers who interrupted a march organized in protest of recent police-involved shootings in other cities.
As WFAA reports, shots were fired downtown before 9 p.m. As of a 12:30 a.m. news conference, the Dallas Police Department had one suspect in custody after a shoot-out and officers were negotiating with another suspect in a parking garage. According to police, the second “suspect told negotiators 'the end was coming,' that he's 'going to hurt and kill more of us' (meaning law enforcement), and that there were bombs planted all over the garage and downtown."
The motive for the shooting was unclear early Friday morning.
The march, otherwise peaceful, was one of many in cities across the country organized Thursday to protest the shootings of two black men, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, who each died at the hands of police this week in Louisiana and Minnesota, respectively.
Richard Adams told WFAA that the Dallas protest was “a lovely, peaceful march” before the shots rang out — what he said sounded like “a bunch of firecrackers going off.”
“Everybody just stopped — 'Run, run for your lives!'” he told WFAA.
As law enforcement responded to the shooting, state officials responded to the violence with sorrow and disbelief, the Tribune's Johnathan Silver writes. Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement that “our thoughts and prayers” were with Dallas law enforcement and the victims. “In times like this we must remember — and emphasize — the importance of uniting as Americans,” he wrote.
Abbott later announced that in addition to offering state assistance to the city of Dallas, he was cutting short an out-of-state trip and traveling there.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, also released a statement early Friday morning in which he said, "Our thoughts and prayers go out to these officers and their families, and to those who have been injured. My office is in close contact with the local authorities on the ground and we will be offering to provide whatever support we can to help in assisting the victims and bringing the perpetrators to justice."
Trib Must Reads
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Border Corruption Often Has Family Roots, by Nicole Cobler — David Cruz joined the U.S. Border Patrol because he wanted to be "part of the best." But family pressures, disillusionment, love and greed drove him to begin taking bribes to help immigrants enter the country illegally.
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Provost Confirmed as Next Texas Tech President, by Matthew Watkins — Lawrence Schovanec, a longtime Texas Tech University faculty member who is the current provost, has been named the next president of the school.
(Links below lead to outside websites; content might be behind paywall)
Carrying while black? Be careful, community leaders warn, Houston Chronicle
How hits to the oil industry are clouding the Texas budget forecast, Austin American-Statesman
How the 1966 Tower sniper attack fueled debate over campus carry at UT, Austin American-Statesman
Paxton says Obama confusing sex and gender with trans bathroom edict, The Dallas Morning News
Hurd grills Comey about Clinton’s emails, San Antonio Express-News
Senator wants state to investigate UT's Houston land purchase, Houston Chronicle
Human Rights Watch says inadequate health care response contributed to immigrant deaths in detention, San Antonio Express-News
Harris County vulnerable to potential Zika outbreak, Houston Chronicle
5 things to know about Texas’ fight against Zika, Austin American-Statesman
Stock sales rise, but money still scarce for drillers, Houston Chronicle
Victim wonders why Dallas DA candidate made deal in beating case that left him blind in one eye, The Dallas Morning News
Quote to Note
“Women with children and babies and everybody was chaotically running. And then, maybe I was a half-a-block away, calming down a little bit when we heard it again. [...] There must have been five times tonight -- whenever we thought we were safe, people said 'Run, people were shot!'”
— Richard Adams, a bystander, on the Thursday night shooting in Dallas
Today in TribTalk
Emergency leave policies warrant legislative attention, by State Sen. Jane Nelson — Agencies should not be using emergency leave intended for grieving employees as a means of severance pay for departing employees, and we will make that clear.
News From Home
• While several high-profile cases have fueled a national debate on police shootings, there is no comprehensive data on such shootings in Texas. With reader support, we hope to introduce a new layer of transparency here. And you can help. Click here for more information on how to assist in making this project a reality.
• Since 2004, more than 100 federal law enforcement officials charged with protecting the border have been accused of doing the exact opposite. See their mugshots and stories in this interactive database of allegedly corrupt border watchdogs.
Trib Events for the Calendar
• The Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 23-25 at the University of Texas at Austin
• TribFeast: A Dinner To Support Nonprofit Journalism on Sept. 24 at the University of Texas at Austin's Etter-Harbin Alumni Center