Cuba Gooding, Jr. Cried Over Slain Dallas Police Officer He Recently Met
Entertainment| | By Sara Wilkins
Cuba Gooding, Jr. broke down in tears after learning he had recently met one of the police officers killed in the tragic Dallas, Texas shooting.
Five police officers died on Thursday after being targeted by a sniper at a Black Lives Matter rally, held to protest the slayings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile – two African-American men who were killed by cops in Louisiana and Minnesota earlier in the week.
It subsequently emerged that one of the law enforcement officials, Officer Patrick Zamarripa, had had a chance encounter with the Jerry Maguire star back in February, when Zamarripa shared a photo of the actor posing with him and a colleague on Twitter.
— Patrick Zamarripa (@PatrickEZ01) February 25, 2016
“The great @cubagoodingjr. Thanx (sic) for taking the pic with my partner and I. Hope your stay in #Dallas was great sir!” the 32-year-old Navy veteran and father captioned the photo.
Zamarripa’s post began circulating online after his death, which prompted Gooding Jr. to pay his respects to the slain officer.
When asked what he thought of the photo, he became visibly emotional, telling TMZ, “I cried today when I heard that. I cried. That’s all I’ll say,” the actor said as he left a Los Angeles restaurant, clasping his hands as he spoke.
The police officer wasn’t the only one involved in Thursday’s tragedy to enjoy a celebrity encounter. A Facebook photo of alleged sniper Micah Johnson meeting Public Enemy’s Professor Griff also went viral, leading the rapper to vehemently deny any association with the shooting suspect.
“I do not know the shooter,” he tweeted on Friday. “I will not sit back and let these people assassinate my character and tie me to the Dallas shootings.”