BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- "I've got a second chance at life, to turn my life around. It's all because of him."
Dean Johnson Jr. said his dad, Harold Dean Johnson, was always looking out for others. That's exactly why, when Harold Dean's girlfriend called just after midnight August 26 and he heard a robbery in progress, he ran to the Domino's where she worked a few blocks away.
Dean Junior followed suit and said when they arrived to the building his dad made a quick decision with big implications.
"He hollered at me. 'Go to the front! Go to the front!' So I took off jogging and kind of come around here," said Johnson Jr.
Johnson said the man who was robbing the place exited the back of the business right around that time.
"That's when I heard him holler my name and when I turned around the gun shot went off."
Harold Dean had been shot in the back of the head by the suspect, who then ran from the scene.
"That where all the blood was. It was all up under here like that," said Johnson as he pointed to the spot where his father was killed.
Dean Junior said the decision made by his father to take the back door is what ultimately cost him his life. A life he said he now has due to his father. Despite the fact that it's been six months, the images of that night haven't gotten softer.
"Not as much as I had a first but I still have flashbacks. If I drive by there, I just think about it. It just comes to me."
Police later arrested John Paul Shobe, charging him with robbery and murder charges. Shobe pleaded not guilty back in October. As for Johnson, he said those close to his father believe justice can only happen one way.
"Not just family but friends of his say the only justice they think should be served is the death penalty," said Dean Johnson Jr.
Until the decision for justice is made, Dean Junior said a hole will remain in his heart.
"It is what it is. I say that buy I miss my daddy. I wish he was still here. I mean I think about it. I think about it every day."
Since the murder did occur during the course of a robbery the Commonwealth Attorney said the death penalty is an option. A pre-trial conference for Shobe is set to take place on April 14th.