DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – During the nationwide protests last weekend over the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis Police Custody, the brother of one of the Dallas police officers killed in the July 7, 2016 downtown ambush was watching closely.
Carlos Zamarripa said it hurt to see the violence, vandalism and looting that ensued.READ MORE: Preschool Owners Battling City Of Plano Over Eminent Domain For 4 Years
“It was flashbacks and the whole nightmare all over again,” he said.
The nightmare he’s talking about is night his brother, Dallas Police Officer Patrick Zamarripa, and four other officers were killed in a police ambush that erupted during a protest.
“All five families, for everyone who was involved.. it was just surreal,” he said. “I’m always concerned about everybody’s safety, not just an officer, not just a protester.”READ MORE: Fewer North Texans Opening Homes To New Pets With Schools And Businesses Back Open
Over the years, he’s had a lot of time to reflect and now has a message.
“I would tell these people first of all I am you. I was you,” he said. “It’s hard to say… I’m a victim of police excessive force.”
He said every person has every right to express themselves, but asks they do it peacefully.
He’s also created a campaign on his Facebook page urging people to vote, saying that’s how real change occurs.MORE NEWS: San Antonio Airport Gunman Killed Himself, Autopsy Shows
“You can’t bring awareness to a negative action with another negative action,” he said. “You have to be a part of the solution, not the problem and that was me as a former criminal saying I want to be a part of the solution.There is always hope for tomorrow when you do the right thing.”