The mother of slain Dallas police officer Patrick Zamarripa, a Fort Worth native, issued a statement Tuesday, distancing herself and the foundation under her son’s name from a lawsuit filed Monday against Black Lives Matter and other activist groups.
The lawsuit, filed by Zamarripa’s father, “does not reflect the views and beliefs of Ms. Valerie Zamarripa or The Patrick Zamarripa Foundation.”
The lawsuit, which seeks $550 million in damages, claims that Black Lives Matter and other groups incited a “War on police” that led to Zamarripa’s death.
The 32-year-old was working on bicycle patrol the night of July 7, when hundreds marched through downtown Dallas, protesting the recent shootings of African-Americans by police.
Toward the end of the march, a sniper, Micah Johnson, opened fire, ambushing the crowd and killing five police officers — four from the Dallas Police Department, including Zamarripa, and one from the DART Police Department.
Zamarripa, a graduate of Paschal High School in Fort Worth, had become a police officer after serving three tours of duty in Iraq.
His father’s lawsuit Monday did not name the Next Generation Action Network, which helped organize the July 7 protest, or its leaders as defendants. But it included a long list of other activists:
Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam; Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network; Black Lives Matter organizers Rashad Turner, Opal Tometi, Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, Deray McKesson and Johnetta Elzie; Malik Zulu Shabazz, leader of the New Black Panthers Party; and George Soros, a supporter of Black Lives Matter.
Enrique Zamarripa’s lawsuit claimed that Johnson, the Dallas shooter, was “acting as an agent of and at and under the direction of” the defendants.
Zamarripa said he filed the lawsuit because “I want justice for my son.”
The statement by Patrick Zamarripa’s mother, who is divorced from his father, and his foundation said they were made aware of the lawsuit through news reports.
“Our ultimate goal is to bring awareness and unity in our community and communities around the nation,” Stephanie Fong-Garza, Zamarripa’s cousin and the founder of his foundation, said in the statement.