At approximately 11:50 a.m., plain clothes Intelligence officers were on the parking lot of 2020 W. Wheatland Road to monitor a group called Back the Blue Cruise, a group mainly comprised of individuals belonging to the Texas Ram Club and North Texas Jeep Club. The group was given permission by staff at Friendship-West to use their parking lot as a rest area while they caravan around the city of Dallas to show their support for law enforcement.
Leading up to the event, organizers had reached out to the Dallas Police Department to obtain a 1st Amendment Right permit to have a police escort for their caravan. However, they were denied their request since it had not been the department’s practice to provide escorts during caravans.
The group size grew to nearly 1000 bikers, jeeps and other assorted automobiles. There was only one entrance and exit provided for the vehicles to enter and exit the parking lot, causing congestion and a severe traffic hazard on Wheatland Road. Therefore, out of the interest of public safety, uniform Dallas police officers were dispatched to the location to provide traffic control so that emergency vehicles and other motorist could have clear passage. This continued until the group exited the parking lot at approximately 1:00 p.m. At no time, did Dallas officers provide escorts during this incident.