A Florida man fired nearly a dozen rounds in an apparent road rage dispute in North Miami. The shooter told Florida Highway Patrol that he shot because he thought the other driver had a gun.
According to a news release from the Florida Highway Patrol, a black Toyota Venza and a black Toyota Camry were heading south on I-95 near Northwest 151st Street when they were involved in a road rage incident.
Troopers said the drivers exchanged gunfire and both vehicles were struck by bullets.
Troopers identified the shooter as Michael Phillip Popper, 30, who they said became involved in a road rage incident with another driver.
After the shootout, the driver of the Venza pulled to the right shoulder of the highway and called the police.
Authorities said the driver of the Camry continued heading south and exited the highway at Northwest 125th Street before parking his vehicle and also calling the police.
The drivers were the only people inside their vehicles at the time of the shooting and neither driver was injured, troopers said.
“The defendant changed lanes in front of the victim and abruptly cut him off. When the victim honked his horn, the defendant shouted an expletive and abruptly applied his brakes, ” said police.
“The victim tailgated the defendant for a short time and made hand gestures out of his driver’s window. In the video, the defendant is seen retrieving a handgun from his center console and pointing it towards his driver’s door,” according to investigators.
“When the defendant begins to pass the victim on the right, the defendant points the handgun towards his right-front passenger door. As the victim passes the defendant, he throws and strikes the victim’s vehicle with an unknown object,” investigators said.
Popper turned himself in to the Florida Highway Patrol but has since bonded out of jail. He faces charges including aggravated felony assault with a firearm.
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