Chairman of Dallas Police Oversight Board Wants Investigation into Police Handling of Monday's Protest

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Frustration hurt and anger still linger in Dallas after days of protests over the death of George Floyd and other injustices against black people.

On Tuesday police Chief Renee Hall defended her decision to detain protesters Monday night on the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. The chief made it very clear today that there will be consequences for violations.

But what happened on the bridge isn’t so cut and dry for the chairman of the Community Police oversight Board. Jesuorbo Enobakhare still questions how the situations was handled, and he wants more answers.

The Community Police Oversight Board has not met due to the community spread of COVID-19. While away, they could not have predicted the death of George Floyd and the civil unrest that followed. Chairman Jesuorbo Enobakhare said they’re eager to reconvene.

“Board members have been chomping at the bit to get to work. We have a lot of work to do,” he said.

The board will meet again next week, and already there’s a task at hand.

“I’m going to ask my board that I’m meeting on Tuesday to pass a motion directing the office of community police oversight to investigate the events of Monday night,” said Enobakhare.

On Monday, protesters marching onto the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge were blocked on both ends by law enforcement. They were detained, and most of them later released.

Chief Renee Hall said the protesters defied orders.

“The protesters were warned not to take the bridge. They took the bridge. They took the bridge. They were warned again to come off of the bridge or arrests would be made,” said Hall.

Protesters shared their experiences during the incident.

“We heard the pop of their guns that shoot rubber bullets or whatever, I don’t know. People started falling back and we realized that they had us sandwiched,” said Nick Edwards, a protester who was detained and later released.

Chief Hall also addressed those criticizing her leadership Monday night.

“There are many who question and are not happy with the decision that I made on yesterday. Let me be clear, I am not here to make people happy. My job and our job in law enforcement is to keep the city safe,” Hall said.

Enobakhare said, because the protest was peaceful, he questions the tactics and force used to detain those involved.

“There’s discretion, of course, on how to handle these things,” he said. “That is just not a good look for Dallas. It’s not a good look for Dallas police department.”

He had this to say to those involved in protests throughout the city.

 “Keep up the fight. There’s not time for delay in justice. We need justice now. It is time for racism to be removed in all of our institutions. Especially in law enforcement,” said Enobakhare.

As those detained during the protest wait to see if they’ll face charges…we’ve learned about 20 attorneys are standing by to assist in the legal process.

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