Dallas Mural Honoring Fallen Officers Violates City Codes

Dallas officials are asking that a mural honoring law enforcement officers who died in a sniper attack last year be taken down or altered because it violates city codes.

The owner of Last Call Lounge in downtown Dallas did not have a permit to use metal siding to construct the 8-foot fence on which the mural was painted, according to a violation notice issued May 25. Inspectors said the material blocks visibility at a nearby four-way stop.

It is located one block from Jefferson Boulevard in Oak Cliff at the corner of Centre Street and Madison Avenue.

Cesar Rodriguez, who operates the lounge owned by his cousin, installed the siding on a rod iron fence that existed on the property when work began on the mural more than a month ago.

After receiving the violation notice, he applied for a permit to build the fence and use the metal siding. He also hired workers to move the fence back three feet to increase visibility at the intersection.

The $2,100 in alterations added to an already expensive project that cost about $15,000, Rodriguez said.

The painting pays tribute to the five officers killed during an attack on law enforcement at a Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas on July 7, 2016. Flowers, notes and other tokens have been left at the mural regularly since it was unveiled Monday, Rodriguez said.

"I'm frustrated because we tried to do something for the police department. We tried to make the neighborhood look a little bit better," he said. "We feel a little bit sad that we're doing all this for our city, and they don't see or appreciate that."

Inspectors have yet to assess whether the alterations meet compliance standards.

Late Thursday, city spokesman Richard Hill responded to an email inquiry.

He said inspectors first cited the bar in May after someone complained about the metal fence — before the mural was painted. Inspectors found no permit had been issued.

It is set to be reinspected on Aug. 2, Hill said.

"Should the violation remain, an additional citation may be issued," he said.

NBC 5's Scott Gordon contributed to this report.

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