With road rage in area rising, here are tips to handle incidents

According to Florida Highway Patrol officials, Northeast Florida has seen a dramatic rise in road rage incidents over the past three years. News4Jax Reporter Brie Isom takes a look at a San Marco incident that happened in December.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Florida Highway Patrol says there were 28 road rage cases in Northeast Florida in 2019. that number jumped to 48 in 2020.

Many probably have stories of dealing with someone aggressively tailgating or flashing their lights, but sometimes these incidents can be much worse.

Our crime and safety expert, Ken Jefferson, says you should never confront a road rager.

“Cut people off, swerve, not paying close attention, that creates anger,” Jefferson said.

Jefferson said he has noticed the increase of road ragers in the area.

“I see it everyday people get angry, get frustrated with other drivers, whether they’re cutting them off or texting and driving,” Jefferson said.

Jefferson says road ragers are hard to prosecute.

“Road rage arrests can prove to be difficult outside of a tag number and a good vehicle desertion and a good description of the driver,” he said. “Persons can deny the fact that they were the driver or driving at that time.”

Recently, no arrests were made despite footage from a witness of a driver running several cars off of I-95.

The witness who took the video called 9-1-1, and Jefferson says that’s exactly what you should do if you’re in that situation.

“Let police know where you are,” he said. “Stay on the phone with dispatchers so they know exactly where you are when they arrive.”

There was a recent arrest in a case of road rage.

The victim of that incident was walking his dog along Belote Place, which has no sidewalks. A speeding car swerved around a parked car and almost hit him and his girlfriend. He told that person to slow down, and was attacked with a hammer.

The man had serious injuries to his skull and shoulder.

According to JSO jail logs, the attacker, Ronnesha Walston, was arrested last Wednesday and charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

She’s still awaiting her trial.

About the Author:

Brie Isom joined the News4JAX team in January 2021 after spending three years covering news in South Bend, Indiana.