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Dallas PD: Following fatal southern Dallas concert shooting, off-duty officers cannot work permit-less events

Six off-duty Dallas PD officers and a sergeant worked as security for the event prior to the shooting, according to chief Eddie Garcia.

DALLAS — Dallas police are working two investigations involving a concert where 16 people were shot, including a 26-year-old man was killed. 

The first investigation involves the criminal case into who committed the shooting and who should be held responsible for the concert getting out of control. There is also an internal review into why a sergeant and six other Dallas police officers were working the event.

The event was promoted on social media, and the crowd swelled to more than 2,000 people. Sources told WFAA the crowd was restless because the rapper who was headlining didn't show up and people were angry.

Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia said someone fired a gun into the air, then a fight broke out and another person fired shots into the crowd.

RELATED: 15 injured, including 13-year-old, and 1 man killed in weekend concert shooting in southern Dallas, police say

The event was held on the outskirts of town, and the promoter didn't have a permit; although they did have some security, including six off-duty Dallas police officers and a sergeant.

Garcia said they should not have been given permission to work that event. Sources told WFAA those officers were only paid to be there until 11 p.m., so they left before the shooting started a couple of hours later. 

But, the question is why supervisors were not notified there might be a crowd control issue so they could have sent on-duty officers to assist.

Garcia said the department is looking into that, but added the real issue was that the concert was not permitted.

”The reality of it is that [the event] was an unpermitted sponsored event that drew the crowds that didn’t have the safety protocols in place,” said Garcia.

Chief Garcia and the mayor met Monday afternoon to discuss what happened and what the City can do to strengthen the permitting ordinance, as well as creating an ordinance to run background checks on promoters. 

“We want to make sure if there are promoters promoting events, there’s a strong background on those promoters and the events they are bringing to our city. That needs to be done,” said Garcia.

The chief also issued a letter to the department prohibiting off-duty work at events that don’t have a permit with 100 or more guests. 

“Effective immediately, DPD officers shall not work events that require a permit and have not been issued a permit, per city ordinance 42A. It is the responsibility of each officer/coordinator to confirm permitting of the event through the Special Events Unit,” said Garcia. “DPD recognizes the need to implement immediate measures to ensure safety of off-duty personnel and event attendees.”

Garcia said he also wants the public to know the department is prepared to shut down events that don’t have a permit. 

“I want to warn the public that city ordinances will be enforced,” Garcia said.

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