Authorities will continue withholding the name of an East Texas man who was found dead in a Van neighborhood Monday morning, until his family has been located and notified.
Around 10:30, the Van Zandt County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from someone driving down East Ohio Street. The caller said a white male was lying in the road and appeared to have a gunshot wound to the chest. That turned out to be a stab wound.
Van Police Chief Tony Richardson says, when police arrived, they found a white male in his 40s laying unconscious in the street. Officers tried to resuscitate him, but EMS arrived to find him already dead.
Van Police do not believe the man was a longtime resident of Van, but they do believe he was temporarily living in a house not far from where he was found. Another man who lives on that street, did not want to show his face on camera, but he did describe what he saw.
"I saw the victim run out of the house and another guy chasing him with something in his hand. I then lost sight and saw the other guy run back into the house," he says.
The man says he didn't witness the actual stabbing but did see police put two people in the back of a police car.
"They went to the house and knocked on the door and both the lady that lives there and the gentleman that I saw... [police] put them both in handcuffs," he says.
Van Police say they took those two people in for questioning, but were not quick to name anyone a suspect. While no one has been officially arrested in the stabbing, Van Police say people living in the area are not in danger.
"I believe right now that a lot of his friends or associates could be a suspect," says Chief Richardson.
Police say some homes on Ohio Street do have a history with law enforcement. The people living on this street say that history is drug-related.
"It's pretty much known there's a lot of drug activity over on the end of the street. We've reported it several times, but nobody has ever been caught or anything done about it," says the neighbor who wishes to remain anonymous.
Residents say they hope things will change in their neighborhood after what happened Monday. Van schools were put on lockdown as a precaution when the 911 call first came in. Police say there was never any threat to the schools, but they wanted to make sure students were safe while they gathered more information about the stabbing.
According to Van ISD superintendent Don Dunn, police informed the district of the stabbing and the decision was made to place all campuses on a "low-level" lockdown. All campuses were closed and had their outside doors locked for a period of time Monday. The lockdown was lifted by mid-afternoon.
Police spent Monday interviewing people in the area, working together with the Van Zandt County Sheriff's Department, and the Texas Rangers.
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