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PD: Garland Man Set Clerk On Fire During Robbery

By Matt Goodman, CBSDFW.com
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johnson matthew lee PD: Garland Man Set Clerk On Fire During Robbery

Matthew Lee Johnson, 36, is accused of setting a store clerk on fire during a robbery. (Credit: Garland PD)

GARLAND (CBSDFW.COM) – A man who robbed a gas station in the 3300 block of Broadway Blvd. Sunday doused the 76 year old attendant in gasoline and set her ablaze, burning more than 40 percent of her body.

At about 7 a.m., Garland Police spokesman Joe Harn said two officers were responding to an alarm call nearby and saw “a flash of fire” inside a Fina station at the intersection of Broadway and Colonel Dr.

The two quickly found the burning woman and put the flames out using an extinguisher. Harn said the woman was still standing and told officers what happened. She also described her attacker.

Garland Fire Paramedics took the woman to Parkland Memorial Hospital in critical condition. Doctors would tell investigators that burns covered 40 percent of her body.

After the fire, dispatchers got a report that a man was trying to break into houses located in a residential area behind the Fina station. Garland Police spread out and canvassed the area, eventually locating the man.

Matthew Lee Johnson, 36, of Garland, was charged with robbery of an individual at his home. Police believe he’s the person who set the clerk aflame and charged him with criminal attempt –– capital murder.

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