Dallas Police Applications Tripled After Tragic Shootings

Dallas police chief David Brown, center, takes part in a candle light vigil at City Hall, Monday, July 11, 2016, in Dallas / AP
July 26, 2016

Job applications to the Dallas Police Department have more than tripled after a gunman fatally shot five of its law enforcement officers earlier this month.

The department received 136 applications from June 8 to June 20, versus 467 applications from July 8 to July 20, marking a 344 percent jump since the shooting, the Washington Post reported Monday.

In the days following the July 7 shootings that interrupted a peaceful Black Lives Matters demonstration, Dallas Police Chief David Brown urged protesters to join the city’s police force.

"We’re hiring," Brown said during a press conference two weeks ago. "Get off that protest line and put an application in. We’ll put you in your neighborhood and help you resolve some of those problems."

The gunman, Army Veteran Micah Johnson, 25, told law enforcement he was angry about recent police shootings of black men and wanted to kill white officers. Police killed Johnson after he ambushed Dallas officers, killing five and injuring nine others.

The department has recently struggled with the recruitment and retention of officers and was forced in recent months to cancel training academy classes due to the lack of interest.

Just two months ago, a former Dallas officer told local station WFAA that the department was undergoing a "mass exodus." Dallas Police Association President Ron Pinkston criticized Brown in June for the department’s "low pay, bad management, and a lack of boots on the ground."

The start pay for Dallas officers is below $45,000 a year. Nearby cities, including Fort Worth, pay officers between $10,000 to $15,000 more annually.

Still, the Dallas Police Department wrote on its Facebook page Friday that employment applications were "steadily flowing in daily" in the wake of the tragic shootings.

Published under: Police , Texas