Texas police have identified one of the five officers killed by sniper fire on Thursday night at a Black Lives Matter protest in Dallas.
Dallas Area Rapid Transit officials identified Officer Brent Thompson, 43, as one of the officers fatally shot at the protest, DART announced in a statement.
“As you can imagine, our hearts are broken. This is something that touches every part of our organization,” officials said in the statement. “Officer Thompson is the first officer killed in the line of duty since DART formed a police department in 1989.”
Three other officers injured in the shooting are expected to recover, DART announced.
During a Friday appearance on the Today show, officials with the Dallas Police Department said that Thompson, who acted as both a patrol officer and transit officer, had recently gotten married.
“This is very heartbreaking for us, not only because of that reason, but because we lost a member in blue,” DART Chief James Spiller said.
“Brent was a great officer and he will definitely be missed,” Spiller said.
“We’re also making sure that his family is taken care of and that’s where our attention is focused now, toward the injured officers, Brent’s family and with the Dallas Police Department, making sure we’re there for them with the investigation and the care and well-being of their officers also.”
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Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings told Today that a total of 12 officers were shot, including eight Dallas Police Department officers. Five of the officers were killed and two civilians, one man and one woman, were injured.
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Authorities have said the gunfire came from “elevated positions” near the rally.
“This is a terrible blow to the city of Dallas,” he said. “This is a terrible blow to the United States of America and it calls for us to come together at this time and hopefully love one another deeply.”
Rawlings said that there are three suspects in custody and one suspect was killed in a shootout with police Thursday night. Rawlings said that those in custody are not cooperating with the investigation.
“They’re subjects that we’re just interviewing and they’re being pretty tight-lipped,” he said, adding, “We’re glad that we took down one of the suspects.”
Rawlings said that the motive for the shooting is simple: “They wanted to kill police officers. And sadly, they did.”
“There is no possible justification for these kinds of attacks or any violence against law enforcement,” he said. “Anyone involved in the senseless murders will be held fully accountable. Justice will be done.”
The Black Lives Matter protest, which had been peaceful before the shooting, came as thousands across the nation were demonstrating against the deaths of a 37-year-old Louisiana man Alton Sterling and 32-year-old Philando Castile, both of whom were recently killed by police officers.