Arlington Man Found Guilty, Sentenced to Life of Killing Good Samaritan

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    Arlington Police Dept
    Thomas Lester Harper

    A Tarrant County jury found an Arlington man has been sentenced to life in prison for murder in a December 2011 fatal shooting of a good Samaritan after a car crash.

    A Tarrant County jury deliberated about 40 minutes Tuesday before deciding the sentence for 27-year-old Thomas Lester Harper. 

    Sentencing Continues for Good Samaritan Killer

    [DFW] Sentencing Continues for Good Samaritan Killer
    Sentencing continues Tuesday for an Arlington man found guilty of murder in December 2011 fatal shooting of a good Samaritan after a car crash. (Published Tuesday, May 6, 2014)

    A statement from the Tarrant County District Attorney's Office says the 30-year-old defendant must serve 30 years of his prison sentence before becoming eligible for parole.

    Harper crashed his vehicle at the intersection of North Collins Street and Brown Boulevard, causing an eight-car wreck, that left another driver dead. He then shot and killed a person who ran to the crash scene to help.

    Arlington police said 11 vehicles were involved in two crashes caused by Harper.

    Investigators said Thomas Lester Harper ran into two cars on North Collins Street near Washington Street then continued driving north on the wet street at a high rate of speed, slamming into seven other cars outside an apartment complex on the corner of Brown Boulevard and North Collins Street.

    Harper's blue Chevrolet Tahoe rear-ended a gray pickup truck, according to police. The man inside the truck, 42-year-old Najee Nasir, was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Harper had his two children, toddlers at the time of the crash, in the back of the Tahoe. The twin brother and sister were injured and taken to Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth.

    Police said 18-year-old Clarence Brian Robinson, lived nearby and approached the sport utility vehicle to help the two toddlers inside, according to the police report, then he was fatally shot.

    During the trial Harper took the stand in his own defense saying he wasn't on drugs that day and didn't remember the crash. Harper told the jury he blacked out and only shot Robinson because he thought his kids were in danger.

    During closing arguments, his defense told the jury again that Harper was protecting his children.

    Prosecutor Jack Strickland called him "a murderer."

    The jury deliberated 45 minutes Monday in Fort Worth before finding Harper guilty of murder.