Five law enforcement officers were killed Thursday in a sniper attack in downtown Dallas as they patrolled a protest against recent police-involved shootings. Here is what we know about the victims who have been
Dallas Area Rapid Transit Officer Brent Thompson was the first slain officer identified in Thursday’s sniper attack on police and was praised as a “great officer” who was recently married, his chief said Friday.
Thompson, 43, is the first transit officer killed in the line of duty in the 27-year history of the agency. He had been an agency employee since 2009.
“Brent was a great officer,” agency Chief James Spiller told MSNBC Friday morning. “He has served admirably during his time here at [the agency].”
Thompson had married a fellow transit officer in the last two weeks, Spiller said.
“As you can imagine, our hearts are broken,” the transit agency said in a statement. “This is something that touches every part of our organization. We have received countless expressions of support and sympathy from around the world through the evening. We are grateful for every message.”
According to Thompson’s LinkedIn profile, he had previously trained police in Southern Iraq for private contractor DynCorp International. The firm confirmed to Yahoo News that Thompson was a former employee.
“Mr. Thompson did work for our company in the past. We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of one of our alumni. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this most difficult time,” said DynCorp spokeswoman Mary Lawrence.
Three other transit agency officers were also shot and injured in the sniper attack. Those officers were identified as Misty McBride, Omar Cannon and Jesus Retana.
“We are grateful to report the three other DART police officers shot during the protest are expected to recover from their injuries,” the transit agency statement read. “No other DART employees working in Downtown during the protest or shooting were injured.”
A devoted father and baseball fan, Patrick Zamarripa was identified by family members as another of the officers slain in Thursday’s sniper attack.
Zamarripa’s father, Rick, told the Washington Post that he texted his son when he heard reports of gunshots during a protest downtown. Uncharacteristically, he received no reply and was later called by Parkland Hospital and informed that his son was one of the victims in the attack.
Upon arriving at the hospital, Rick Zamarripa said he learned from another officer that his son had died.
“He wouldn’t tell me,” the father told the Washington Post. “He had that look on his face. I knew.”
The slain officer served in the Navy and did three tours of duty in Iraq before joining the Dallas Police Department, his father said. He left the armed forces five years ago.
“He comes to the United States to protect people here, and they take his life,” Rick Zamarripa said.
The 32-year-old is survived by his wife, Kristy Villasenor, and his 2-year-old daughter, Lyncoln. He was also a devoted father, and his stepmother, Maria, told the New York Daily News that he was proud that his daughter had just been learning to speak.
“We were just happy to hear her putting words together and he had a big smile on his face,” she said. “That’s what I’ll miss most, his smile.”
An ardent fan of the Texas Rangers and Dallas Cowboys, Patrick Zamarripa routinely posted photos on Facebook of his family at games.
Zamarripa was the second of five Dallas law enforcement officers killed Thursday night by snipers while protesters demonstrated against police shootings in Baton Rouge, La. and Falcon Ridge, Minn.
Family members confirmed that police veteran Michael Krol was also among the dead, the Washington Post reported.
A Detroit-area native, Krol was praised as a gentle man who wanted to help protect others. He had worked at the Dallas Police Department since 2008.
“He was a big guy and had a big heart, and he was a really caring person and wanted to help people,” his brother-in-law Brian Schoenbaechler told the Washington Post. “It doesn’t seem real. His mom’s had a difficult time.”
Krol worked as a security guard at a Michigan hospital and an officer in the Wayne County Jail system before moving to Dallas to become a police officer, which his family said was the realization of a lifelong dream.
“We are saddened by the loss of the dedicated officers in Dallas — one of whom was a former member of this agency — and also the wounding of the other officers,” Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon said in a statement.
Family members identified Michael Smith, a 55-year-old Army veteran, as a casualty of Thursday’s ambush, Dallas local ABC affiliate WFAA reported.
Smith joined the force in 1989 after serving as an Army Ranger and graduating from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas.
Dallas TV Station WFAA is also reporting that Senior Cpl. Lorne Ahrens was killed Friday. The Dallas Morning News reported that Ahrens had been with the Dallas Police Department for 14 years.
This article will be updated as more information becomes available.