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Teen wanted for revenge slaying turns self in

Police on Thursday were searching for a teenager and his mother, who they say gave the boy a handgun after he lost a fight and told him to take revenge.
/ Source: The Associated Press

The 17-year-old murder suspect police say was urged by his mother to shoot a rival after a fist-fight turned himself in to police Friday.

Clarence Johnson had been sought by investigators since the fatal shooting of Robert Dawson, also 17, on Wednesday night.

Johnson initially walked away from what witnesses described as a routine fight with Dawson — but then, according to police, he returned with a gun his mother gave him, along with instructions to seek revenge.

Police have declined to say why they believe his mother, Vanessa Williams, gave her son the gun and ordered him to kill.

Williams, 44, was arrested Thursday. Inside her home, they found a small amount of cocaine and a wall-mounted picture of her son holding a pistol and a wad of cash.

His attorney, Clif Stoutz, said the teen had been in the city since the shooting, “scared for his life.”

“He understands he is in a very, very serious situation that his life depends on,” Stoutz said.

Vanessa Johnson

Johnson was scheduled to appear for a bond hearing Saturday.

Dawson and his mother spent 10 hours on a bus from Dallas on Wednesday and returned to their hometown about 3:30 p.m., relatives said. Four hours later, Dawson became the city’s 21st murder victim of 2007.