(DALLAS) — In his first interview since the Kaufman County district attorney and his wife were murdered, Dallas County D.A. Craig Watkins told ABC News he believes prosecutors around the country are “under attack.”
“Obviously we’re under attack,” Watkins said. “We’ve had two district attorneys lose their lives and we’ve had one law enforcement official in Colorado who lost their [life] because of the job that they do. I think one time may cause questions, two times may cause concern, but three? This is the opportunity for us to advocate for adequate security for all individuals who are in the law enforcement realm.”
Watkins, who is the first African-American D.A. in the history of the state of Texas, admitted he’s received death threats in the past.
“We’ve been dealing with issues since I got elected,” Watkins said. “We didn’t take them seriously, but after what we’ve seen in the last month or so, it’s time for us to take a position that we need to look at this and take it seriously.”
Watkins has decided to beef up security measures to make sure he and his staff are now protected. This is an issue that is now hitting home as well.
“My wife actually is very concerned about it,” said Watkins. “I have three kids that are also concerned because they saw the news coverage and they’re starting to ask questions of me and what am I going to do to make sure that they’re protected.”
”’Dad, what are you going to do to make sure we get to school and we get home safely?'” Watkins said his kids ask him. “‘Because if they would do it in small Kaufman County you’re the second-largest district attorney’s office in the state of Texas so why wouldn’t they do it to you?'”
Watkins said he’s assured his kids they will be safe, but wouldn’t go into the specific details about what measures he’s now taking to protect his family and his staff.
He believes going forward security will become a way of life.
“I was always amazed when I first took office that you would have the mayor of the city of Dallas with a security detail but there was not one for the D.A.,” said Watkins. “So I would imagine that these security details would be put in place for the duration of the existence of the district attorney’s office in Dallas County and throughout the state of Texas.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Rafael Romo and Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
Lois M. Collins, Deseret News
Paul R. La Monica, CNN
Matt Egan, CNN