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UPDATE Wednesday Morning I-80 Assault With Knife Leads To Death

Passenger side of a Hall County Sheriff Vehicle.

(Grand Island, NE) - On June 19th, 2024, at 7:08 a.m. Hall County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 4148 Interstate 80, mile marker 316 ½ westbound rest area, in reference a disturbance. Deputies contacted victims on scene, and it was determined two victims had suffered wounds from an assault with a knife. Both victims were transported to Grand Island Regional Hospital by ambulance. One victim, a 72-year-old male from Eureka Missouri, suffered fatal injuries from the assault and was pronounced dead at Grand Island Regional Hospital. The second victim, a 71-year-old woman, also from Eureka Missouri, suffered life-threatening injuries and was transported by ambulance to Grand Island Regional Hospital where she remains in critical condition.

The lone suspect, 22 year old male, James Thompson Jr., of Elyria Ohio, fled the scene by vehicle and was pursued and apprehended by the Nebraska State Patrol. At this time, it is believed this started as an attempted robbery where the above victims were assaulted with a knife. All suspects have been taken into custody. The Hall County Sheriff’s Office will continue with the investigation. Autopsy has been ordered on the deceased male. We are in the process of notifying next of kin. Assistance was provided by the Nebraska State Patrol, the Grand Island Police Department, Grand Island Ambulance, Doniphan QRT, and Wood River Fire. 

The victims have been identified as Gary and Mary Weaver, husband and wife, from Eureka Missouri. The couple had been traveling through Nebraska in their mobile home when the incident occurred.

James Thompson Jr. has been booked into Hall County Jail for the following offenses.
Murder in the First Degree 28-303 (FEL I)
Attempted Murder in the First Degree 28-303 (FEL I)
1st degree assault 28-308 (FEL II)
Robbery 28-324 (FEL II)
Use Deadly Weapon to Commit a Felony 28-1205(1) (FEL II)
Use Deadly Weapon to Commit a Felony 28-1205(1) (FEL II)
Attempted Theft by Unlawful Taking $5,000.00 28-511 (FEL IV)
Fleeing in a Motor Vehicle to Avoid Arrest 28-905 (FEL IV)
Willful Reckless Driving 60-6,214 (MIS III)
Stop Sign Violation 60-6,148 (INF)
Failure to Signal 60-6,161 (INF)