A 37-year-old Texas man died hours after being hit in the head from behind during an ambush attack by an acquaintance, police said. The victim had been shopping at a Tomball Wal-Mart in the early morning hours of Jan. 2 when he was hit by the man.
Justin Lee “JJ” Jones was taken to a local hospital in The Woodlands, Texas, after the attack at the Wal-Mart but died from the head trauma injuries a few hours later, the Daily Mail reports.
On Jan. 3, police identified the suspect as 29-year-old Michael Brandon Jemison following the public release of a surveillance video screenshot from inside the store showing him leaving the premises.
Authorities expected Jemison to turn himself in on Jan. 3 but he never appeared at the police station, KPRC reports.
Law enforcement officials believe the ambush on Justin Jones was not randomly carried out, but that the victim — a father of two — knew Jemison.
Witnesses of the incident say Jemison attacked Jones and struck him in the head with his motorcycle helmet at around 1 a.m. on Jan. 2. Police officers responding to the call found Jones lying on the ground, unconscious, the Houston Chronicle reports.
Jones’ partner, Lindsey Stover, stated she does not know Jemison but urged him to step forward “and own up to what they did,” she said. “I want answers.”
According to his Facebook profile, Jones, who was employed by an air conditioning company, is leaving behind his mother, his sister and two young sons.
We’re saddened by what happened inside our store and our thoughts are with the customer’s family,” Wal-Mart said in an official statement. “We are cooperating with the Tomball police in their investigation and encourage anyone with information to contact authorities.”
“He was so full of life, he was happy,” said Stover of her partner. “He wanted to make everyone smile, he wanted to make everyone happy.”
A relative has put together a GoFundMe page to help raise funds for Jones’ funeral expenses. As of Jan. 4, the campaign has raised $800.
Sources: Daily Mail, Houston Chronicle, KPRC / Photo credit: Justin Jones/Facebook via Daily Mail, KTRK, KHOU