Five Dallas police officers have been killed by sniper fire during protests against the shooting of black men by police.
Officers are in a standoff with one armed man in a garage. Three other people have been detained, the BBC reports.
The snipers fired from an elevated position on police just minutes before 9pm as protesters marched through the city. Earlier reports confirmed four officers were killed, the death toll has now risen to five.
I am so scared. pic.twitter.com/jw88QnKGXG
— Allison (@allisongriz) July 8, 2016
The protests were sparked by the deaths of Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota.
Dallas Police Chief David Brown told NBC News the suspect in the standoff with police ‘has told our negotiators that the end is coming, and he is going to hurt and kill more of us, meaning law enforcement, and that there are bombs all over the place in this garage and downtown.’
He described the shootings as ‘ambush style’ and added: “We do not have a comfort level that we have all the suspects.”
A total of 11 officers have been shot, five fatally.
Chief Brown said:
We believe that these suspects were positioning themselves in a way to triangulate on these officers from two different perches… and planned to injure and kill as many law enforcement officers as they could.
— BBC Breaking News (@BBCBreaking) July 8, 2016
Around 800 people were at the demonstration, and around 100 police officers were assigned the surrounding area, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said. The shooting occurred after the demonstration ended and as a march was taking place.