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LPD sees support in wake of Dallas shooting

LaGRANGE — Messages and gifts of love and support continually flowed into the LaGrange Police Department on Friday as the community shared its commitment to law enforcement officers following the deadly shootings of police in Dallas.

“There are no words to express the senseless, tragic and sad loss of those five officers. It’s a stark reminder of the challenges officers face everyday,” said LaGrange Public Safety Chief Lou Dekmar. “The irony is, those officers had nothing to do with the incidents (police shootings) in Louisiana or Minnesota. … They were there to provide protection for those residents who were peacefully exercising their first amendment rights and unbeknownest to those officers, it became a killing ground for them.

“Police officers are just like everyone else,” he continued. “They’re mothers, fathers, daughter, sons, husbands and wives. They had plans for today, next week, next month and next year. Now those plans will never happen.”

In light of the tragedies in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, this week, all LaGrange police officers have reviewed protocols and procedures to ensure their own safety and that of the community, Dekmar said.

Residents near and far have embraced LaGrange police officers and are willing to back the blue.

“The community locally and throughout the state and nation are overwhelmingly supportive of the police,” Dekmar said. They have been so in this instance again.”

The shooting in Dallas left five Dallas police officers dead, including a transit authority officer, and another seven were wounded when a lone gunman opened fire on them in the downtown area Thursday night during a peaceful protest over officer involved shootings in other states.

The lone gunman, identified as Micah Xavier Johnson, 25, of Dallas, was killed later that night by Dallas police.

It was the deadliest single day for law enforcement officers in the United States since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on America.

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By Melanie Ruberti

mruberti@civitasmedia.com

Melanie Ruberti is a reporter with LaGrange Daily News. She may be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2156.