Road Rage + Axe = Arrests

by | Jun 18, 2021

Photo credit: Sam Ross/

Police arrested two brothers from Wyoming, R.I., ages 29 and 31, for disorderly conduct after a road rage incident in which one of them allegedly struck another car with a hatchet. The 29-year-old, who is accused of wielding the hatchet, was also charged with vandalism.

Police were called to 2500 New London Turnpike on a report of a fight between people using axes and baseball bats to hurt each other. Police found an SUV with open doors, a damaged driver side wheel well and a broken rear window, as well as a Toyota with minor front passenger side damage. Two children were inside the SUV, crying hysterically and yelling, “He hit the car with an axe!” When asked who “he” was, they pointed toward a man speaking to Coventry police officers. 

One of the East Greenwich officers spoke with the person who called the police, he said his mother had been driving his two younger brothers and him when the Toyota brake-checked his mother’s car, causing her to swerve her SUV, striking the front passenger bumper of the Toyota. When they reached the red light in front of McDonald’s, the caller said someone from the Toyota got out of the vehicle holding a hatchet, which he then used to smash the SUV’s rear window. The caller said the man with the axe attempted to strike him but never made contact, while the other man headlocked his mother. The caller’s mother confirmed his story, and said she heard one brother tell the other, “I’m getting the gun.” That was why she grabbed the baseball bat to defend herself, she said. Police later found an unloaded Glock 23 40-caliber gun in the trunk of the Toyota as well as a magazine containing 12 rounds.

Another officer went to speak with the man the children pointed to. After the man calmed down, he told police that while on 95 South in the passenger’s seat of the Toyota – his brother, the 31-year-old, driving – the SUV cut them off and struck their car. The brothers followed the SUV which the 29-year-old said was “trying to drive them off the road by brake checking them.” The brothers followed the SUV as it took Exit 7 and continued on New London Turnpike. When the cars slowed at the traffic light in front of McDonalds, the 29-year-old got out of the Toyota and ran at the SUV. He said his head went through the rear window causing it to shatter, but according to the report, the man had no bumps or bruises on his head; he did have a cut over his left eye and cuts on his arms. 

Multiple witnesses said the 29-year-old had an axe, which Coventry police found in the center console of the brothers’ car. At this point, the 29-year-old changed his story so that he had the axe when he got out of the car and swung it at the rear window of the SUV, breaking it. His brother said he got out of the car at this point, while the driver of the SUV grabbed a bat to defend herself, but did not hit anyone. At some point during the incident, the 29-year-old fell onto the ground, where someone hit his face, causing his facial injuries. Police arrested the brothers and took them to headquarters for processing.

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