After the horrific police shooting in Dallas on Thursday night, one suspect — Micah Johnson — has been identified so far. As the event unfolded, however, the Texas city’s police department circulated a photo of “one of [their] suspects” on Twitter. The picture of a young African-American man walking among the Black Lives Matter protesters, wearing a camouflage shirt and brandishing an AR-15 assault rifle, quickly went viral. Unfortunately for protester Mark Hughes, who wasn’t doing anything illegal, this was actually a case of misidentification — one that would prove disastrous for him and his family Friday morning.
Soon after the tweeted photo went live, CBS DFW caught up with Hughes’s older brother, protest organizer Cory Hughes. When a reporter asked Cory about the Dallas Police Department’s claim that Mark was a suspect, he denied it outright:
“First of all, that’s my little brother. That’s not the suspect. He called me earlier today. We’ve been to several protests, and he decided to come out here and exercise his second amendment right to bear arms. When people started shooting, I found my little brother and made him give his gun to a law officer. So although he may have had his gun, he is not a suspect.”
Cory revealed that after turning over his weapon to the police, Mark left the scene and returned home. “They got him all over the national news like he’s a suspect,” he exclaimed, adding: “That’s a threat to his life. So he is not a suspect!” Two other men standing behind Cory chimed in, identifying themselves as Mark’s classmates who’d driven into Dallas with him for the protest. They corroborated Cory’s insistence that Mark had turned his weapon over to the police, and even stated it wasn’t loaded at the time.