NEW YORK – Today, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh C. Johnson delivered the following remarks on last night’s shooting in Dallas:
"Last night in Dallas a group peaceably assembled to demonstrate and express their grievances. This is something they had a right to do, in accord with our American tradition of peaceful demonstration in pursuit of change.
The evening was shattered by a despicable act of murder directed at those present to keep the peace. At this time, there appears to have been one gunman with no known links to or inspiration from any international terrorist organization. One Dallas Area Rapid Transit officer has been killed, four Dallas Police officers have been killed, and other law enforcement officers have been wounded. Several civilians were also wounded. We mourn the loss of those killed, and pray for the wounded.
Many people, from multiple communities, are angry and on edge.
Today I come to One Police Plaza to stand with law enforcement, to say this:
Last night’s killer acted with a depraved misbelief that the murder of police officers solves a problem. Just like last night’s killer does not represent all those who seek to bring about change, any police officer who engages in excessive force does not represent all those in law enforcement; far from it.
The role of the police officer is to protect and to serve; to keep the peace and serve the community. This is the reason the overwhelming, overwhelming majority of our Nation’s law enforcement officers put on a badge, and it is what they do every day in your community and mine. Indeed, in the face of last night’s attack targeting the police, their first reaction was to protect the public.
Violence is never the answer. Violence directed at our police officers is never the answer. Violence directed at police officers endangers them, and it endangers the very public they are sworn to protect.
Now more than ever the police and the communities they serve must come together, heal the wounds, and bridge any differences. Dallas, in particular, has been a model in that regard. Today the families of those killed should know we stand with them, grieve with them, and will do our best to support them in the days ahead.