Road Rage In Dallas Leads To Punch, Stupid Shooting

A road incident in Dallas left one man with a gunshot wound and the other to answer for it.

Dallas police say a road rage incident between two men on North Central Expressway lead to one of them being shot.

The incident happened around 12: 30 p.m. Thursday in the 10200 block of the freeway near Walnut Hill Lane.

According to police, a driver exited his vehicle, confronted another motorist and punched him.  In return, police say the motorist pulled out a gun and shot the man that confronted him.

Oh, dear.

I’m expecting both men to end up being charged here.

The driver who had the gun was relatively safe inside his vehicle as he traveled on the expressway. His decision to pull over onto the shoulder of the expressway so that he and the man following him directly contributed to the confrontation.

The idiot who pulled over behind him is culpable for turning a driving dispute into a criminal assault.

That said, under Texas Penal Code, the driver with the gun was not legally justified in shooting the man.

Why? Texas Penal Code § 9.31.4 specifically says if the actor provoked the incident then he cannot claim lawful self defense. Here, the man with the gun both played a role in the road rage itself, then helped initiate the physical dispute by pulling over. Second, the use of force is limited to proportionality. You can’t respond to a punch by stabbing someone, or shooting them as this person did in this incident.

There are going to be attempts to claim (by both readers and the shooter’s attorney) that Texas Penal Code § 9.31.1 allows someone to use deadly force if they attacked in their vehicle. Texas Penal Code § 9.31.2, however, quickly makes it clear that they cannot have provoked the confrontation.

This should end up with both men charged.

It’s too bad neither man was mature enough to let whatever traffic faux pas that aroused anger to go. Now they both have to pay the piper for their anger and immaturity.