21 Jun 2017 Palo Pinto, TX
Police in central Texas arrested the driver of a Toyota Prius after he allegedly fired shots at another vehicle. The road rage incident occurred after the other driver reportedly flipped off the Prius driver.
Palo Pinto County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a call from a couple reporting shots being fired at their car. The incident occurred just outside the sheriff’s office and deputies heard the shots as well.
“They just happened to be coming down the main highway into the law enforcement center,” Sheriff Brett McGuire told the Mineral Wells Index. “Obviously, it was right there. As we left the building we heard what sounded like a single gunshot.”
Deputies responded quickly, stopping Jay Brumbaugh, 76, a Weatherford, Texas, resident, in his Prius. The deputies took Brumbaugh into custody and charged him with two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
The sheriff said they also interviewed the couple in the other vehicle. Their identities were withheld but the sheriff described them as a 33-year-old male and a 32-year-old female from Mineral Wells, Texas.
The investigation revealed the shooting followed a road rage encounter. The couple had been stuck behind Brumbaugh’s Prius for a long time and were unable to pass. When they finally could pass safely, they “made an obscene gesture,” McGuire told the reporter. “The driver took exception and a bit of offense, and produced a handgun and shot rounds at the vehicle.”
He said the incident happened within 200 yards of the sheriff’s office.
McGuire said his deputies heard the last of three gunshots as they rushed out the door.
“There were several of us who bailed out of here,” the sheriff told the Index. “We came out the front door and said, ‘Well that is convenient.’”
One of the rounds struck the hood of the Mineral Wells couple’s car.
McGuire said the proximity to his office made the arrest and investigation much simpler, but “I can do without the gunfire on the streets.”