An 85-year-old Crofton man is recovering after being repeatedly punched in the face by a driver in a road-rage incident Wednesday near Duncan.
North Cowichan-Duncan RCMP said the man told them he was driving on Herd Road toward Duncan about noon when he was tailgated and passed by a truck.
The truck pulled over in the 2500 block of Herd Road and the victim pulled in behind.
After a brief discussion, the driver of the truck smashed the victim’s window and punched the man repeatedly in the face and head.
The man then smashed the passenger-side window of the victim’s car and left in his truck.
The victim was taken to hospital. Police couldn’t provide information on the man’s condition, but said he received treatment in hospital and was released.
North Cowichan Mayor Al Siebring said he had never seen anything like this in the community.
“I can’t believe what I’m reading. This is not who we are,” Siebring said. “This person is not representative in any way of the kind of people who live in North Cowichan.”
The mayor said he was surprised not just by the attack itself, but by the location, describing Herd Road as “a bucolic country road” that runs through farm fields.
“It’s not like we’re sitting in traffic. You hear about those kind of road-rage things in high traffic and pressure of commuting,” Siebring said. “We don’t do that in North Cowichan. Most people have a maximum of two stop lights on their commute. I can’t figure out what happened here.”
Const. Pam Bolton of North Cowichan-Duncan RCMP said physical altercations stemming from road rage are not common.
“It’s a risk that happens if you stop and engage in any sort of conversation. What we always recommend is if a person feels this is escalating, call 911 or drive to the closest safe place,” Bolton said.
Police have talked to one witness and are looking for more, Bolton said. They also have a short video of the vehicles and the truck leaving the scene, but it does not depict the attack itself.
The truck involved is described as a silver third-generation Dodge Ram with an extended cab and a short bed. The truck has a white canopy with tinted side glass and rear glass, black or dark after-market rims and an accent along the top of the rear bumper.
Police are asking anyone who witnessed the incident or has dash-camera footage of the assault to contact them at 250-748-5522 and refer to file number 2019-18034.
Anonymous reports can be made to Cowichan Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).