Police chief reaches out to community after police shootings

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by MONIKA DIAZ

WFAA

Posted on December 4, 2010 at 8:31 PM

Updated Sunday, Dec 5 at 12:08 AM

Dallas Police Chief David Brown met with community activists on Saturday in the wake of several controversial police shootings. In two, the men were unarmed.

The families of suspects, who have been shot and killed by Dallas police officers, attended the meeting at Bible Way Baptist church.

A new group is demanding action after two deadly shootings in late October and early November.

On November 7th, Tony Menchaca was killed on Davis Street. Investigators claim that he repeatedly told officers he had a gun during a standoff.

On October 29th, officers fired at Tobias Mackey. They say he was combative and refused to show his hands. Both men were not armed.

The coalition, Concerned Citizens for Good Law Enforcement, wants better training for officers and to improve community relations.

Chief Brown attended the meeting but couldn't discuss the shootings because they are still under investigation.

He said he welcomes this dialog with the community. He says it also has to focus on citizen education and giving the public an opportunity to hear from officers who have been shot in the line of duty.

"We are not waiting for another young man to be slain. We are trying to be proactive to prevent some of these. We want to protect the citizens but we also want to protect the police officers," Juanita Wallace from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) said.

"This past Sunday, we had an officer shot in the hip," Brown said, adding that they are also trying to get the officers' perspective.

Another meeting is scheduled for December 18th.

E-mail: mdiaz@wfaa.com

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