October 15, 2013 9:45:11 AM
JACKSON -- A 56-year-old man shot to death at Jackson motel Sunday has been identified as bass fisherman James "Jimmy" Johnson.
Chris Bowes, senior tournament manager for the Bassmaster Opens, says in a statement that Johnson and his wife were in Jackson to compete at the Bassmaster Central Open on Ross Barnett Reservoir scheduled to begin Thursday. Johnson's wife was not hurt.
Jackson Police Department spokeswoman Colendula Green says the investigation is continuing.
Bowes said Johnson was shot after confronting someone burglarizing his boat.
"There was some sort of violent altercation near his hotel room door," Bowes told The Clarion-Ledger.
Johnson, of Ganado, Texas, was 11th in Central Open standings after two events.
The Motel 6 where the shooting occurred about 8 p.m. is located off Interstate 55 in north Jackson.
"We were shocked and saddened to learn late Sunday night that Jimmy Johnson was killed while staying in a motel near the lake," BASS CEO Bruce Akin said in a news release. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as the bass fishing community rallies around them."
The Central Open is the first Bassmaster event at Ross Barnett Reservoir in over a decade, according to Bowes. He said they planned to honor Johnson at the registration event Wednesday evening.
"The event will go on and we know that it was an isolated incident," Bowes said. "We don't want to lose focus and everyone there will have a heavy heart."
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