As of 3:45 a.m. Eastern Time, officials reported five police officers dead after a sniper started firing on law enforcement presence at what started out as a peaceful protest and demonstration in Dallas, TX. Seven other officers and at least two civilians were wounded.

The downtown protest focused on police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota and was relatively peaceful until the shots rained down from the tops of high-rises as the march was approaching City Hall at around 9 p.m.

Dallas Police Chief David Brown said one sniper, who held police at bay in a parking garage before being killed by an explosive device used by police, told negotiators he wanted to kill as many white people and especially white police officers as possible.

Police Chief David Brown told media the gunman said the authorities would find planted explosives soon.

Authorities say three other suspects are in custody and, at this point, are not talking.