According to Brown, the shootout began at around 12:30 a.m., when the suspect or suspects parked in front of the department’s headquarters south of downtown and began firing. At least one assailant later drove off in a dark-colored van, which witnesses described as armored, but not before ramming a police cruiser. The moment was caught on cellphone video shot from a nearby balcony in which several shots can be heard.
Officers trailed the van to a Jack in the Box parking lot in Hutchins, a Dallas suburb, where a SWAT team had it surrounded, Brown said. They had been speaking to a man inside who identified himself as James Boulware and who said he blames police for losing custody of his son and “accusing him of being a terrorist.”
The gunman also said he had explosives in the van, which appeared to be outfitted with gun ports in the sides.