Abilene

Friends of killed motorcyclist feel relief following arrest

ABILENE, Texas - The arrest of Daniel Patrick Jones has brought an end to a "year of frustration" for the friends and family members of motorcyclist Robert Harrington.

Robert Kennedy, Harrington's good friend and former 12-step sponsor, says he believes Harrington's biker image held up the case's investigation.

Jones was arrested Wednesday and charged with manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide. Police say Jones intentional ran Harrington off of I-20, which lead to his death.

"We've had all these incidents that make people say white lives matter, black lives matter, cops lives matter, but now we have to realize all lives matter, even someone who has made their share of mistakes," said Kennedy.

Harrington was sober for several years and had started to help other get turn their lives around.

"It was awesome to see how far he had come from his background," Kennedy said.

"[He went from being] a big intimidating biker to someone who helped people. What he appeared to be on the outside wasn't what he was at all."

As the weeks and months passed, Kennedy said he began to feel like the system had let him down.

Two months after Harrington's death, his family and friends met at the scene of the crash to show their frustration with the Abilene Police Department through a protest. Holding signs and chanting, the group pleaded APD to arrest Jones.

Taylor County District Attorney James Eidson said the case was investigated by APD's criminal and traffic departments, then sent to the D.A.'s office, where it was presented to a grand jury. Eidson said when that process was completed, he was then able to charge Jones.

"It was an extremely good feeling to find out [Jones] was arrested, just to know that something has been done after a whole year of feeling like people don't care and nothing was ever going to happen," Kennedy said.

Harrington's friends had planned a memorial bike ride before Jones was arrested. That ride will still take place Oct. 3.


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