SACRAMENTO, CA - A 36-year-old robbery case turns into a homicide investigation after the victim died of medical complications.
Walter Johnson, 62, died Monday at a Sacramento hospital when medical complications arose from being paralyzed; he was shot during a robbery in 1977 which caused his paralysis, Sacramento police said.
Johnson was driving home to his parents' house on April 9, 1977, when the roadway was block by a car at San Carlos way, between 13th and 14th avenues. Three men had blocked the roadway and then confronted Johnson, who was still in his vehicle.
Police said Johnson fought with the suspects, but was shot in the upper body; the suspects robbed Johnson and drove away from the scene in a red or brown Ford Pinto.
"He was looking for me. He thought it was me," Walter's brother Donald Johnson Sr. said.
The shooting paralyzed Johnson and caused other medical complications.
Donald Johnson said despite his brother being paralyzed from the attack he forgave his attackers.
At the time, robbery detectives collected evidence and conducted interviews, but the suspects were never identified or found. Police said the case has been handed over to homicide detectives as well as the Sacramento County Coroner's Office.
Anyone with information about this case is urged to call Sacramento police at (916) 443-HELP (4357) or text in a tip to 274637 (CRIMES). Enter SACTIP followed by the tip information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.