A woman aiming at another person in a road rage altercation shot her husband in the head and now faces attempted murder charges
Here’s yet another reason why we don’t all need to be carrying guns around: in Alabama this week, a woman who was involved in a road rage incident fired a gun meaning to hit someone else, but instead shot her husband in the head.
The road rage altercation occurred on Highway 69 in Dodge City on Saturday night, July 6. The vehicles then drove to a second location on Country Road 160 in Bremen, where the shooting took place at a residence.
According to the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office, the woman, Erica Cole, attempted to shoot another party involved in the incident, but instead shot her husband, Nicholas Cole, in the head.
The sheriff reported that he is in stable condition.
Cole was arrested for attempted murder, assault and reckless endangerment and is being held in the Cullman County Detention Center with no bond.
It’s unclear what started the road rage incident or who’s home the incident occurred at. No other details have been released yet in the case because the investigation is ongoing.
This incident took place just two days after another horrific road rage incident, this one in Houston, Texas, in which a road rage altercation led to the serious injury of a family of four. In this instance, a man pulled a gun on a man in a truck who allegedly cut him off. The man in the truck began to drive away as soon as he saw the gun, but the armed man fired at the vehicle, igniting fireworks that were stored in the back. The cab was quickly engulfed by flames, and bystanders had to pull out the man, his wife, and their two children, ages one and two. All four members of the family remain in the hospital with serious third-degree burns — both children had to be airlifted to medical help and remain in critical condition.
In March, a mother in Greensboro, North Carolina was shot and killed in front of her kids following a road rage incident. In that case, 26-year-old Carolyn Tiger was running errands for her son’s birthday when an enraged driver ran her off the road, blocked her in, shot out her tires, and then shot her to death.
Road rage has been responsible for about 300 deaths since 2013.
According to a study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, 80 percent of drivers have become angered while driving, and 51 percent admit to tailgating on purpose. Another 24 percent say that they have intentionally blocked a driver from switching lanes, while four percent say that they’ve followed a car and exited their vehicle to confront another driver. Three percent admit physically bumping another vehicle with their own car.
Road rage incidents can go from arguments to deadly violence quickly, especially if there is a firearm involved. When someone’s anger is sparked and a gun is available, people who wouldn’t normally be violent can escalate a confrontation within seconds by pulling a weapon.
There are piles of studies that show that the more guns in a community, the more murders take place, and that gun availability is linked strongly with gun violence. One way to stop these deadly road rage incidents is simply to have tighter, tougher gun laws and better gun control policies.
If you spot an aggressive driver on the roads, call 911 to report dangerous activity. If a car begins to follow you after a road rage incident, drive to the nearest police station.
“If there is someone who is behaving aggressively toward you, we advise people not to make eye contact, not to react, not to engage at all,” said Mary Maguire, a spokesperson for AAA Northeast, regarding how to avoid road rage. “Never get out of your car, which certainly leaves you vulnerable to all types of unsafe situations and behavior. We teach people also not to drive aggressively themselves. Don’t offend. Don’t tailgate. Don’t weave in and out of traffic. Don’t cut off other drivers. Don’t honk your horn for an excessive period of time. All those types of things tend to antagonize other drivers.”