Austin Police Announce Arrest in String of Rock Throwing Cases

Jun 16, 2016

Patrick Eugene Johnson, 59, arrested today in connection with rock throwing incidents on I-35.
Credit Austin Police Department

UPDATE: Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo has announced the arrest of Patrick Eugene Johnson, 59, on one count of attempted aggravated assault in connection with the rock throwing cases on I-35.

In an afternoon news conference, Acevedo said Johnson has confessed to two of the rock throwings, but Acevedo anticipates Johnson is responsible for the "lion's share" of the 94 rock throwing cases that have been reported. He expects attempted murder charges to be filed.

He's being held on $250,000 bail at the Travis County Jail.

On May 15th, a UT police officer's car was hit by a rock, but caught Johnson's vehicle on the police car's dashcam. That footage eventually led to an arrest.

Acevedo would not elaborate on Johnson's motives or why police didn't arrest him until today. Johnson, a tow truck driver, also called 911 to report some of the rock throwing incidents, according to Acevedo.

EARLIER: Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo announced on Twitter today that his department has made an arrest in a series of incidents where large rocks were being thrown through the windshields of cars traveling at high speeds on some of the city's highways.

Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo announces the arrest of Patrick Johnson on June 16, 2016.
Credit Lauren Hubbard/KUT

The rock throwing has gone on for more than a year. At 94 such cases have been reported, mostly between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Several led to serious injuries, though no deaths have resulted thus far.

A $25,000 reward was being offered for information leading to an arrest.