DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Police say a former A&M football star turned himself in after the violent attack.
Thomas Johnson, 21, was once a rising football star. He was a high profile recruit from Dallas’s Skyline High School and became a celebrated wide receiver for Texas A&M. Johnson was considered by many, the pride of the South Oak Cliff neighborhood where he grew up.
“Everyone was proud of him but you could tell after he lost everything that his whole life changed. He just went down,” said a one time neighbor.
In 2012, the then 18-year-old college freshman was reported missing. He resurfaced, but would never play football for Texas A&M again.
“I couldn’t understand him doing anything but trying to get himself back together,” said Anthony Billard, who watched Johnson grow up.
Johnson said he was angry, according to police, as he confessed to Monday morning’s heinous crime.
“He stated he was put out of his home. I don’t know for how long,” said Deputy Chief Rob Sherwin.
Johnson chose his victim – an unsuspecting jogger — at random, according to investigators. He then walked to the nearby equestrian center and called 911. It was unclear whether he confessed to the dispatcher over the phone.
Police said the victim wasn’t carrying any identification. He’s described as a white male who could be in his mid 20’s or 30’s.
In a message on Facebook Monday night, police called the victim a valued member of the community.
“In light of today’s incident patrols will be stepped up to ensure the safety of the public. Officers will be diligent in their patrols. It is important to us that the White Rock Creek Trail remains a safe place for the public to enjoy their exercise routines and to feel secure while doing so,” Deputy Chief Andy Acord said in the message.
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