(JTA) — Five officers were shot dead in Dallas at a protest against police violence.
Several suspects were implicated in the firing at the officers on Thursday night during protests against police in downtown Dallas, marking the deadliest single attack on U.S. law enforcement since September 11, 2001, CNN reported. Some of the shots were sniper fire.
The gunfire started Thursday night as demonstrators marched against the shooting deaths of two African-American men by police in Louisiana and Minnesota.
A total of 11 officers were shot, and some of the six officers injured are undergoing surgery, authorities said.
A total of 10 police officers were shot by snipers during the protests, Dallas Police Chief David Brown said. An 11th officer was shot during an exchange of gunfire with a suspect, authorities said.
Brown said it’s unclear how many suspects were involved, but three people are in custody. Dallas police negotiated and exchanged gunfire with a suspect for hours at a parking garage in downtown. That suspect is dead, a law enforcement official told CNN. The official did not say how the suspect died.
President Barack Obama, who is in Warsaw, Poland for a NATO summit, said: “We still don’t know all the facts, we do know there’s been a vicious, calculated and despicable act on law enforcement,” Obama said. “I believe I speak for every American when I say we are horrified.”
The Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas added its voice to the many groups that spoke of their horror and indignation following the attack.
“We are shocked and horrified by the attack on our Dallas Police this evening, and our thoughts and prayers are with those recovering and the families of those mourning the senseless deaths of their loved ones,” the Federation wrote on Facebook. “Cowards used this opportunity to fire upon those very officers charged with maintaining order and protecting the protesters. The cycle of violence sweeping our country is both senseless and reprehensible; may calmer heads prevail across our country.”