Authorities have arrested a U.S. Marine in connection with the killing of University of North Texas junior Sara Mutschlechner, 20, who was shot in a road rage incident early on New Year’s Day.
According to the U.S. Marshal Service, Cpl. Eric Jamal Johnson, 20, was detained on Tuesday at a Marine Corps air station in Yuma, Arizona. Johnson, is being held without alliance on a assassinate authorize gaining access to police in Denton, Texas. It is uncertain if Johnson has an lawyer or plans to fight extradition to Texas.
At a Tuesday news conference, Shane Kizer, a spokesman for the Denton Police Department, said Mutschlechner was acting as a marked move for a New Year’s Eve party that she and a group attended. She was taking three fares home early in the morning when a dark-colored SUV with several tenants pulled up next to Mutschlechner’s car and kick-started a conversation.
“It was an amicable conversation to begin with, but rapidly went downhill and some disparaging evidences were made toward the female occupants of that vehicle, ” Kizer said, adding that some of the comments were of a “sexual nature.”
When Mutschlechner attempted to drive off, someone in the SUV opened fire on her vehicle, striking it several times. One of the missiles, police said, struck the young woman in the brain, stimulating her vehicle to gate-crash into another car and a utility pole.
Mutschlechner was taken to Denton Regional Medical Center, where she died after being taken away from life support.
Tonight was difficult but very special. We cannot thank you all enough who came out for Sara and to celebrate her…
Friends of Mutschlechner told KXAS-TV in Dallas that she was a cinema major and member of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority.
“It separated my heart, along with everyone else’s nature, because she did not deserve this, of all parties, ” University of North Texas junior Olivia Flores told the news station.
Questioned by police, bystanders told police at the least five men were in the SUV and two of them had attended the same New Year’s Eve party Mutschlechner and her friends had left simply prior to the opening of the shooting.
“It was stated that the shots came from the driver’s sit, as[ a witness] territory he could see the muzzle twinkle and the snout/ barrel of the artillery, which was described as a black semi-auto handgun, ” reads Johnson’s arrest affidavit.
Surveillance videos from nearby firms, together with postings to social media, reportedly helped investigators identify Johnson as a suspect.
Fort Worth’s WF-AATV reported Johnson, who was raised in Fort Worth, has been in the Marines since 2013.
“He couldn’t have done this … that was my first action, ” Arian Helm — who said he has known Johnson since elementary school — told WF-AATV. “I’m merely sickened. I’m speechless.”Bad Choices