Local/State

Road rage gunman shoots car on Schuylkill Expressway

Friday, July 12, 2013

A Montgomery County motorist is lucky to be alive after someone shot out his car window on the Schuylkill Expressway, and a police manhunt is now underway to catch the gunman.

Action News has exclusive details about the incident, which happened on a very busy stretch of the expressway around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday. The cars involved were headed west on the expressway between Montgomery Drive and the Roosevelt Boulevard.

The 26-year-old victim tells police he passed another vehicle traveling in the left center lane, and upon merging in front of that vehicle the other driver sped up and then fired a shot that went through the back window of the victim's 1999 Chrysler 300.

The bullet hit the windshield just to the left of the driver's head. It was an extremely close call.

"The bullet traveled through and struck the front windshield," said Pennsylvania State Police Corporal Gerald McShea, adding that the bullet hit right next to where the driver was sitting. "Inches from his head," said McShea.

After it hit the windshield, the bullet ricocheted off the dashboard and hit the windshield again. The driver literally dodged the same bullet twice.

He was so scared he kept driving all the way to his home police department in Cheltenham, Montgomery County to report the incident.

It's now in the hands of the Pennsylvania State Police, who say the incident endangered a lot of innocent people.

If the bullet "had struck the driver, he could have lost control, causing an accident. Who knows where it goes on from there," said McShea. "Definitely a risk. I mean, even the fact he was able to hit a vehicle, traveling in a car, shooting out of it - he's lucky he didn't hit a passerby or an uninvolved vehicle."

The man driving the car that was targeted is lucky to be alive, if not seriously injured.

It has happened before.

Five years ago, Thomas Timko was shot in the head during a road rage incident on the expressway.

He has permanent brain damage, and the man who shot him is serving 13 to 16 years in prison. The police say it's happening far too often.

"It's not the first incident, without a doubt. It does occur too much. People get a little too aggressive behind the wheel and don't know how to control themselves," said McShea.

There were a lot of other cars on that stretch highway Wednesday night. State Police are asking anyone who might have seen what happened to call them at 215-452-5216.

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philadelphia, road rage, local/state
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