Dallas – Two snipers apparently shot 11 police officers during protests in Dallas on Thursday night and four officers are dead, the city’s police chief said.
A statement from Dallas Police Chief David Brown released by a city spokeswoman said “it appears that two snipers shot ten police officers from elevated positions during the protest/rally”.
The statement said three officers are deceased, two are in surgery and three are in critical condition. It was later updated to say four officers had died, and 11 had been shot at.
The gunfire broke out around 20:45 local time while hundreds of people were gathered to protest fatal police shootings this week in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and suburban St Paul, Minnesota.
“An intensive search” for suspects is currently under way, it said. No one is in custody.
Live TV video showed protesters marching along a street in downtown, about half a mile from City Hall, when the shots erupted and the crowd scattered, seeking cover.
Scores of police and security officers were on hand. Police and others hunched behind cars outside a parking garage. Officers with guns drawn were running near and into the parking garage as police searched for the shooters.
TV cameras showed the search for the gunmen stretched throughout downtown, an area of hotels, restaurants, businesses and some residential apartments. The scene was chaotic, with helicopters hovering overhead and officers with automatic rifles on the street corners.