Updated: Wednesday, 02 Sep 2009, 12:47 PM CDT
Published : Tuesday, 01 Sep 2009, 8:39 PM CDT
AUSTIN (KXAN) - The teenager charged with killing two recent University of Texas graduates at their West Campus apartment in July had recently earned the Eagle Scout ranking. James "Ricky" Thompson, 19, is charged with two counts of capital murder in the July 21 deaths of Stacy Barnett and John Goosey at her West campus apartment.
But his arrest came as a shock to many in the local Boy Scouts organization.
"There is a disconnect there," said spokesperson Charles Mead. "It's unfortunate any time anybody gets involved in crime, let alone something of this magnitude."
Boy Scouts spokesperson Charles Mead said Thompson was suspended from the Boy Scouts after his arrest in July..
"In the case of Eagle Scout, you're talking not only about this slice of a service project that's delivered, but also the development of young leaders that wind up in the future serving the community," said Mead.
Eagle Scout is the highest rank in the Boy Scouts organization.
"It's a significant goal that doesn't just get done in a day," said Mead.
In fact, it takes years to complete and fewer than five percent of Boy Scouts reach the Eagle Scout ranking. Thompson achieved it in September 2008, when he was 18.
Earlier that year, Thompson dropped out of Lake Travis High School his senior year. He had been in trouble for stealing alcohol from a Lakeway country club and for smoking marijuana. Austin police said Thompson was selling pot for John Goosey, a recent University of Texas graduate who they describe as a mid-level distributor.
According to his arrest warrant, Thompson told a friend he shot Goosey because of an $8,500 drug debt. Police believe Goosey had been "fronting" marijuana to Thompson to sell and was putting pressure on the teenager to pay up. Homicide investigators said Thompson felt he had to kill Goosey. They said Stacy Barnett, who happened to be in the apartment, was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Thompson has not yet been indicted on the charges and remains in the Travis County jail without bond.