AUSTIN (KXAN) — The man police say caused “the lion’s share” of rock-throwing cases could be going to trial with four new indictments.
Patrick Johnson is accused of throwing rocks onto Interstate 35 since 2014 leaving a trail of blood and several drivers severely injured. He is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Police said over the past two years Johnson would act like a Good Samaritan and lead officers to the scenes where the attacks occurred.
The attorney for Johnson, Michael Watson, said while his client was given a plea deal, there is not a firm deadline on when they need to answer. The state is offering Johnson a 40 year sentence on each of the four cases to run concurrently. Watson says he expects this case to go to trial.
One of the victims of a rock throwing suffered brain damage. According to an arrest affidavit, the rock smashed through the windshield, hitting Kenneth Johnson in the throat and breaking his jaw. Kenneth suffered a severe head injury and later a stroke. In the two years since Kenneth was hit, the number of rock throwing cases swelled to more than 90.
“We’ve had about 94 cases involving this series of events [since June 2014], and by the time we’re done putting together our case, we believe he’s responsible for the lion’s share of the cases,” said Austin Chief of Police Art Acevedo after Johnson’s arrest in June.
The next courtroom day is scheduled for Nov. 10 at 9 a.m.
Just last month, Johnson was sentenced to life in prison for another crime. He was convicted of abusing a child back in 2012.