DALLAS: As the deadly shooting rampage in Dallas unfolded, one man was surprised amid the chaos to find out police had identified him as a suspected attacker — and his photo was plastered all over the internet.
The Dallas Police Department ignited a brief manhunt for the camouflage-clad Mark Hughes, after tweeting a photo of him toting an AR-15 assault rifle with the words: “This is one of our suspects. Please help us find him!”
Hughes was marching in the Dallas demonstration to protest US police brutality against black Americans — with his gun in tow, which he had been carrying legally with a Texas open-carry permit.
“I wasn’t aware that I was even a suspect. Gun shots rang out. We ran,” he told MSNBC.
“It was hours later after I had given up my gun that I received a phone call that I was now a suspect…. I just didn’t understand how I had become a suspect.”
Hughes then turned himself in to police and was released after being questioned.
When asked why he took his firearm to the protest, Hughes said he was exercising his Second Amendment right — citing the constitutionally protected right to bear arms.
The tweet — retweeted tens of thousands of times — was still visible for hours on Friday on the @DallasPD Twitter feed, but later appeared to have been removed. However, a Periscope video of a press conference still included his image.