Active U.S. Marine Eric Jamal Johnson was arrested Tuesday for allegedly murdering Sara Mutschlechner, a University of North Texas student, during an apparent New Year's Eve road rage incident.
According to The Dallas Morning News
, witnesses said Mutschlechner, 20, was serving as a designated driver for three friends when a gray Honda Pilot with five or six men pulled up beside them at a red light in Denton, Texas.
"It was an amicable conversation to begin with, but quickly went downhill and some derogatory statements were made toward the female occupants of that vehicle," said Shane Kizer, a Denton Police spokesman.
The remarks were of a "sexual nature," said Kizer, and were contested as offensive by a male in Mutschlechner's vehicle.
"Some comments were made back towards him, even a couple of threats were thrown," he said. "About that time, they were driving through the intersection ... when several shots were fired."
One shot struck Mutschlechner in the head, whereupon she lost control of the car. Her car then stuck another moving vehicle before crashing into an electrical pole.
The vehicle carrying the young men left the scene.
According to CNN
, Kizer said a murder warrant had been obtained for Johnson, and that he "was seen with a handgun in the vehicle right before the shots were fired."
Cpl. Johnson, who reportedly goes by the nickname "Santana Sage," was taken into custody in Yuma, Arizona, at the Marine air station without incident. He could possibly be taken back to Texas to face charges. Johnson is part of the Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One, and was alternately reported as either 20 or 25 years old by multiple publications.
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