Man Wrongly Accused in Dallas: 'It Was Persecution'
Last night, Mark Hughes was the most wanted man in America. As the suspected shooter at a Dallas Black Lives Matter protest in which five police officers were killed, Hughes’ face was plastered across network news and social media before he even knew.
“We were here just for a peaceful protest. He was allowing himself to carry a firearm, but that’s his constitutional right," said Cory Hughes, one of the Dallas protest organizers and the wrongly accused's brother.
“I don’t know what to say," the misidentified suspect Hughes said. "I could have easily been shot.”
At the time he was accused, Hughes hadn't even checked his social media feeds.
“We received a phone call that my face was on [TV] as a suspect and immediately I flagged down a police officer," Hughes explained.
"We were assisting the police," added his brother. "We were part of the organization that put on this peaceful protest and so, when they started shooting, we went to the cops and asked, ‘What can we do, how can we help them’ and so, the whole time we were helping cops. Less than 48 hours ago a man that had a permit to carry a gun was killed by a cop," he added.
"And so when they started firing I approached them. I said to my brother, ‘Give your gun to this cop because we don’t want an accident. We don’t want them to come around the corner and see you with a gun and start shooting at you.' And so, when the first shots went off we turned over our gun and helped direct traffic. ... At the end of the day, we came for a peaceful protest. We didn’t want anybody to be hurt," Cory Hughes told CBS News.
Even now, Cory Hughes insists that seeing both sides of the story is important.
"We came just for cops and the world to understand that those that are being killed by cops—we want you guys to know that we’re human, but we understand that cops are human… My brother could have easily been killed because somebody who was irresponsible identified him as a suspect," Cory Hughes said.
But after being interrogated, lied to and stolen from, Mark Hughes doesn't believe an apology from the Dallas Police Department is enough.
“It was persecution against me unrightly and I feel that they need to do something about that," Mark Hughes said.
As it turns out, the gun wasn't even loaded.