A Texas state district judge ordered the chief organizer of the July 7 Dallas-held Black Lives Matter protest to serve two years in prison over repeated violations to an existing probation sentence, yet the activist believes his troubles stem from the Dallas police targeting him.
Friday, Judge Gracie Lewis ordered Dominique Alexander, 27, to spend two years in prison. He was serving a seven-year deferred adjudication probation sentence following a 2009 conviction for injury to a child. Alexander pleaded guilty to shaking a two-year-old baby left in his care. The terms of his probation were set in 2011 by this same judge.
Lewis stipulated he could not carry a firearm or commit any offenses. He had to report regularly to a probation officer and take anger management and parenting classes, according to the Dallas Morning News. Alexander since professed his innocence and said he pleaded guilty to the shaken baby charges because he could not afford a good lawyer.
The self-described “minister of the gospel, civil and human rights activist,” Alexander founded the non-profit Next Generation Action Network, a social justice group. A long-time critic of the Dallas Police Department, Alexander organized the July 7 Dallas protest alleging police brutality nationwide. The demonstration ended with gunman Micah X. Johnson killing five officers and wounding nine others. The activist and his group denied any connection to Johnson.
Last year, The Dallas Morning News chronicled Alexander’s criminal history which included a 2010 check forging charge and a 2011 auto theft. In 2012, the activist was embroiled in a domestic disturbance incident with his girlfriend. In 2014, Alexander orchestrated a Black Lives Matter protest in downtown Dallas that blocked freeway traffic. His records included outstanding traffic violations like driving with an expired drivers license and speeding noted the Dallas newspaper.
Breitbart Texas reported Alexander infused himself into the 2015 McKinney “pool party” incident, leading protests against police. In December, the Morning News reported he failed to pay court-ordered fees, complete anger management classes, or perform his assigned community service hours. Alexander was arrested on the probation violations but was also held on outstanding warrants in Dallas, Arlington, and Grand Prairie. He served 10 days in jail. According to the Associated Press, he left Texas twice without notifying his probation officer. One trip was to Philadelphia to attend the Democratic National Convention.
Dallas police barely grieved the loss of their fallen officers following the July massacre when Alexander called for renewed protests downtown, insisting enough time passed. Breitbart Texas reported he organized a July 29 protest. On August 9, the activist sparred with Dallas Police Chief David Brown online over a planned protest the next day. The city’s top cop asked Alexander “to discontinue protests in the downtown area given the tragic circumstances of July 7 and the associated concerns for our officers’ safety.” Alexander said no. Brown posted the email exchange with Alexander on his blog.
On August 10, Alexander delivered a list of police “reform” demands to Dallas leaders. Alexander was removed and issued a criminal trespass warning following a confrontation with Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings at a City Council meeting. Breitbart Texas reported that authorities arrested Alexander for nine outstanding warrants in Dallas and Collin counties totaling over $5,000. The protest went on without Alexander, who spent the night in the Dallas County Jail.
Alexander and his attorney, Kim Cole, insist Dallas police targeted him because he refused to stop the protests. Friday, Cole shared her disappointment with Judge Lewis’ decision to send Alexander to prison. However, Lewis felt she gave Alexander six years to make better choices. “I’ve done everything but almost beg him to do what he is supposed to do,” she said, also according to the AP.
Alexander’s attorneys will not appeal Lewis’ order. They say Alexander will be eligible for parole in about six months or less given previous time he served.
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