Victims in U.S. 41 road rage incident speak out

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ESTERO, Fla.- The victims in a violent case of road rage are speaking out.

The confrontation began Wednesday afternoon on U.S. 41 near Sandy Lane and ended when the suspect somehow shot himself and crashed his vehicle on Corkscrew Road.

A typical drive home for Melissa Drake became anything but as a noticed an erratic driver while traveling on U.S. 41.

“Looked up in rear view mirror, just saw this Mercedes acting like cars were slaloms,” said Drake.

“Go from the right lane to the left lane, all the way back to the right lane,” said Drake’s son, Shawn Babineau.

Drake says she honked at the driver and that’s when she became his target.

“He slammed on his brakes so hard, I had to slam on my brakes to where my anti-lock brakes started chattering.”

Drake, who was driving with three teenagers in her car, says the man began following them, trying to hurt them.

“Out comes a gun, my son looks at me and goes, is that a gun?'”

Drake says the man then pointed an assault rifle at her, her two children and their friend

“As we are going by, out comes a rifle, and he follows the car again. I could see the scope of the rifle. That’s when I took off.”

Drake says the man tried to hit them three more times with his car.

“I was in absolute fear for my children’s lives and my life.”

The driver eventually crashed into a guardrail on Corkscrew Road, and deputies say he shot himself in the process.

Gayle Sarceno witnessed the accident and rushed to help stop the bleeding.

“You can’t imagine the blood, it was pouring down rain and there was blood everywhere,” said Sarceno. “He was in such severe pain and the bullet was still in his leg.”

Deputies have not named the suspect because he has not been charged. He remains in the hospital.

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