Dallas – The Black Lives Matter protest was attacked Thursday during a peaceful rally resulting in five police officers killed by a sniper and other six officers injured. The identity of the attacker has not been officially released, but The Washington Post says that a senior U.S. law enforcement familiar with the investigation identified the killer as Micah Xavier Johnson.

The suspect died after a remote-controlled explosive delivered by a robot was sent to where he was cornered after the shootingMicah Johnson, a 25-year-old, is believed to be from the Dallas area. He was in the Army reserve from 2009 until 2013, when he was deployed to Afghanistan with the U.S. Army for almost eight months, from November 2013 through July 20014.

A Dallas Police officer stays vigilant following the shooting that took the lives of five police officers, wounded seven other policemen and injured two civilians.
A Dallas Police officer stays vigilant following the shooting that took the lives of five police officers, wounded seven other policemen and injured two civilians. Image Credit: People

Overseas, Mr. Johnson did not have a combat post and was registered as a carpentry and masonry specialist. While he was in the Reserve Army, he served in an engineering brigade before he was sent to Afghanistan according to Army records, reported by The Washington Post.

Johnson’s home was listed in Mesquite, Texas, and apparently, he had no criminal record in the state. His actions are not considered terrorism, international nor domestic, and no evidence links Mr. Johnson, who was black, to the Black Lives Matter movement or other political groups.

The Dallas police chief, David O. Brown said on Friday that during the standoff that followed the attack lasted 4 hours. During the shooting and negotiations between the police and the suspect that he had planted bombs in the area. The attacker said he was upset about the recent shootings, and that happened early this week and involved police officers fatally wounding black men. Chief Brown added that Johnson said he was angry at white people and stated that he wanted to kill white people, especially officers.

The endgame strategy for the shooter in Dallas

Micah Johnson was surrounded on the second floor of a building downtown where a 4-hour standoff took place. Police exchanged gunfire with Johnson, and there were attempts to negotiate, but they were not successful, according to Chief Brown. The shooter told officers he had explosives placed in the downtown area but authorities secured the site, and no bombs were found.

After discussions had broken down, the police force had no other choice but to place an explosive device on their bomb robot to send it to the suspect to not risk any other life. Johnson was killed after the bomb detonated, said The Washington Post.

The New York Times reported that a senior law enforcement official stated that it seems the shooter murdered by the police was a lone wolf, although officers arrested three other suspects because there was uncertainty about the number of gunmen. The first officials’ declarations stated that multiple snipers planned and executed the ambush against the police forces.

The sniper responsible for attacking the Black Lives Matter protest held on Thursday has been identified as Micah Xavier Johnson, a military veteran, and experienced sniper-marksman. Image Credit: Courant

The Washington Post says that Brown believed four suspects were working together with rifles at elevated positions in triangulated posts in the downtown area, from where it could be seen the Black Lives Matter protest. He added that despite the danger, police officers had no chance to protect themselves and put their lives at risk to make sure citizens could get to a safe place.

Dallas councilman, Philip Kingston, confirmed that the shooter said he was acting alone. The statement was made on Friday. Nevertheless, authorities have not ruled out the involvement of other people and three suspects are under arrest.

Chief Brown refused to identify the three suspects until authorities get further into the investigation. He did not say if there are other snipers or shooters involved in the attack.

Police said, according to the Washington Post, that two possible suspects were seen running away with a camouflage bag before speeding off. They were arrested in the Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas. The possible third suspect is a woman and was taken into custody near a garage near the building where Johnson was surrounded.

Five Dallas officers’ Casualties, seven wounded, and two civilians injured

On Friday, names of the killed officer were made public. Among them is Patrick Zamarripa, 32, police officer and veteran who served three tours in Iraq with the U.S. military; Michael Krol, a 40-year old officer who was a Dallas police member since 2008.; and Brent Thompson, 43, and transit police officer. The Washington Post reported.

3 of the seven officers wounded during the shooting were identified by the Dallas transit agency as their personnel and said they were injured but are expected to survive. These officers are Misty McBride, 32, who was shot in the stomach and shoulder; Omar Cannon,44; and Jesus Retana, 39.

The downtown area has been secured by authorities after the gunman claimed it had prepared explosives to set off on site. Image Credit: Mirror
The downtown area has been secured by authorities after the gunman claimed it had prepared explosives to set off on site, according to Dallas officials. Image Credit: Mirror

President Obama reacted to the Dallas shooting Friday morning in Warsaw, where he is attending a NATO meeting.

“We will learn more, undoubtedly, about their twisted motivations, but let’s be clear: there are no possible justifications for these attacks or any violence towards law enforcement,” Obama said to reporters on Friday.

Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, other politicians, and celebrities reacted to the tragedy.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch said to the women and men that were a badge that she wants them to know that she is grateful for the challenging and dangerous work they do every day to keep the streets safe and the nation secure.

The Washington Post states that Lynch said Friday that federal officials including the FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms were working with the local police force to help investigate the attack.

Source: The Washington Post