Police say evidence connects a former Utah state trooper to a shooting spree that occurred Monday, Dec. 22, on a Dallas freeway. The shootings left two people dead, including a truck driver who was preparing to go home for the holidays.
Dallas police believe the shooter was former Utah state trooper Brian Smith – who was on life support as of Wednesday, Dec. 24, following a standoff with police that ended when Smith shot and injured himself.
Police matched bullets from Smith’s gun to three shooting locations during afternoon rush-hour traffic on north Texas roadways.
Killed in one of the shooting incidents along the LBJ Freeway was 42-year-old William Scott Miller of Frankfort, KY, a driver for United Van Lines.
Police are hailing Miller as a hero for steering his truck away from other vehicles after being shot.
“Even though he was mortally wounded, he was able to control his rig,” Police Lt. Craig Miller told reporters.
The trucker was at the tail end of a trip and about to head home for the holidays, Lt. Miller said.
“In speaking with representatives from the company, we know that Mr. Miller was just about to the point where he was going to drop off his big rig and going to fly out of town back to his home in Frankfort, KY, where he’d be with his wife and his children for the holidays,” he stated during a press conference.
Police said the shooter, Smith, is also linked to the death of motorist Jorge Lopez, 20, of Rowlett, TX, who was shot while waiting at a red light.
A driver for Dugan Truck Lines was injured by flying glass during one of the shooting incidents but was otherwise OK. A third truck was hit with bullets but that driver wasn’t hurt, police said.
Police and news media in Texas and Utah are trying to piece together the incidents and determine what caused the ex-trooper to shoot.
– By David Tanner, staff writer