Detectives search for ‘evil’ driver who killed beloved grandfather in Broward

Grieving daughter asks public for help with solving crime

WILTON MANORS, Fla. – Shannon Johnson said she is missing her beloved 61-year-old father, Alton Johnson, a former college football player who had worked as a forklift operator on a shipping dock in Fort Lauderdale.

She said his two sons, Jarvis and Jarred Johnson, and his three grandchildren are missing him terribly. It’s a grief that they have been feeling since they learned police officers found him dead on July 12.

Alton Johnson died along North Andrews Avenue. His cause of death remained a mystery until Sept. 5, just a few days after the family would have celebrated his 62nd birthday.

The Broward County Office of Medical Examiner and Trauma Services reported a driver had struck him. Detectives opened a criminal case and started to search for a hit-and-run driver.

“I don’t have any closure on what happened to him and it is because someone was a coward and left the scene,” Shannon Johnson said.

Johnson’s grieving daughter also had a question for the driver who did it: “How would you feel if someone struck your parent and left them for dead, didn’t stop to check on them or anything? How would you feel?”

The driver may not have known Johnson’s middle name was Gregory, so many of his loved ones knew him as “Greg.”

Aside from his grandkids, his daughter, and his two sons, he also had family in Georgia, Jacksonville, and California and friends in South Florida and North Carolina who are all grieving his death.

Johnson was born in Macon, Georgia, and grew up in Jacksonville where he played football for Jean Ribault High School. He was so talented that he received a scholarship to play at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina. He was living in Broward County when he died.

His grieving family asked the public to help Wilton Manors police officers and Broward County Sheriff’s Office deputies to find the hit-and-run driver. They were also grateful for the kindness of two strangers.

“I just want to thank you so much because apparently there are some evil people in this world that do not care about the lives of others, but you guys stopped and helped him,” Shannon Johnson said adding that she would love to meet them in person but she doesn’t know who they are.

Detectives have not released any vehicle description to the public yet. They were asking anyone with information about the case to call Detective Michael Wiley at 954-321-4841 or Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-8477. There is a $5,000 reward for information resulting in an arrest in the case.

About the Authors:

Bridgette Matter joined the Local 10 News team as a reporter in July 2021. Before moving to South Florida, she began her career in South Bend, Indiana and spent six years in Jacksonville as a reporter and weekend anchor.

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.