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Child Killed in California Road Rage Incident

 Posted on June 23, 2021 in Car Accident

San Jose personal injury attorney Road Rage

A horrific shooting on the Costa Mesa highway has led to the announcement by the California Highway Patrol (CHP) that they may soon begin collecting road rage data that occurs on California roads. The shooting resulted in the killing of a six-year-old boy and, since the shooting, other drivers have reported multiple incidents involving the same couple who have been arrested for the boy’s murder. According to a CHP spokesperson, there are currently no vehicle code designations for road rage incidents for statistical purposes. Road rage incidents are not tracked because police say there is not a specific California law that makes road rage a crime.

Child Killed Over Hand Gesture

The tragic incident occurred last month in the HOV lane of the 55 Freeway in Orange County at about 8 a.m. According to police, the boy’s mother was driving her son to kindergarten when another driver veered into her lane and then cut her vehicle off. As the driver sped away, she gave the mother a peace sign. A few miles later, as the mother exited the HOV lane, she drove by the driver and raised her middle finger at the driver and her male passenger.

The male passenger later told police the mother’s gesture angered him, so he grabbed his loaded Glock 17 9-millimeter pistol, rolled down his window, and shot at the victim’s vehicle. The bullet entered the vehicle in the rear, hitting the child in the back. The couple sped off. The child was declared dead at Children’s Hospital of Orange County about 30 minutes later.

Police arrested the couple two weeks after the shooting and have since discovered they may have been involved in multiple road rage incidents over the past several months, including an incident just a few days after the child’s murder, where another driver said the man waved a gun at him on 91 Freeway in Corona.

Road Rage Statistics

The number of road rage incidents – and their aftermath – are frightening. About one-third of all car accidents that occur in the U.S. are caused by road rage and aggressive driving behaviors, including tailgating, changing lanes without signaling, speeding, and other illegal driving maneuvers.

Unfortunately, the reaction of many drivers to another driver who is acting aggressively is to push back. About 50 percent of drivers admit that they react aggressively to road rage drivers. Some of their reactions include shouting at the driver, using rude gestures, honking their horn, and flashing their lights. This often causes an escalation and injuries.

As the devastating death of the six-year-old victim shows, guns are far too often involved in road rage incidents, with more than one-third of road rage incidents involving at least one of the drivers having a gun in their vehicle.

The best steps a driver can take when encountering an aggressive or raging driver is to give them the space they want, do not react, and do not make eye contact with them. If the other driver is still coming at you, drive to a safe place, such as a police department. Do not drive to your own home and do not get out of your vehicle.

Contact a Palo Alto Personal Injury Attorney

No matter how safe and calm a driver you are, you may at some point encounter an aggressive driver whose actions cause a crash and injuries. If this happens to you, our seasoned Santa Clara County car accident attorney can help. Call our office today at 408-234-7563 to schedule a free consultation.






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