DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – It was a violent wake-up call June 13, 2015.
A heavily-armed man in an armored vehicle opened fire on Dallas Police Headquarters.
Now, the President of the Dallas Police Association, Mike Mata says he’s relieved security improvements will finally be made. “It’s unfortunate. I think everyone will agree that it’s almost ridiculous that it took over two years to get it done, but I appreciate the fact they are doing it now.”
Construction is set to begin next month after the city council voted this week to spend nearly $2 million, much of it in the front lobby area.
Mata says, “At a minimum, you’d have to have bullet-proof glass and some type of major separation so if somebody did make it into the lobby, they are stuck there.”
The money for the improvements at headquarters will come from prior city bond packages.
DPD’s seven sub-stations will soon receive security upgrades too.
In April, officers arrested a man with a mask at the southwest substation who had two guns with multiple magazines fully loaded.
Mata credits observant officers. “I’m telling you right now, it prevented people from dying that day.”
He says he’s happy to hear DPD’s new Chief, Renee Hall, wants officers’ feedback before she decides how to tighten security at sub-stations.
The officers he says should have adequate protection for their vehicles and for themselves as they walk in and out.
For now, multiple officers keep watch at each of the sub-stations, but Mata questions how long that can continue.
“We can’t have officers here like this one guarding stations forever. We have citizens we’re supposed to answer calls for.”
Funding for the substation improvements will come from a new bond package.
Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway says, “Now, people have to go to the polls and they have to vote for the bond program so we can take care of the other needs throughout the city and those include police.”
Dallas residents will vote on the bond package in November.
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