As road rage incidents spike in Utah, one man is paying the price for getting mad at the wrong driver, according to police.
Taylor Ray Bradley, 29, was driving through the Salt Lake City suburb of West Valley City about 11:45 a.m. Monday when a vehicle in front of him changed lanes and then made a turn, according to KSL-TV, citing a police affidavit.
The affidavit said the incident began with tailgating but soon escalated.
It said Bradley took things to the next level by pulling up alongside the truck that had enraged him. He “began yelling profanities and proceeded to point what appears to be a small silver firearm” at the other driver, according to the affidavit.
Bradley then passed the truck.
But that was not the end of the story, because the truck that annoyed him was an unmarked patrol vehicle driven by a sergeant with the Granite School District Police Department.
The sergeant then hit the flashing reds, and Bradley was pulled over, KSL reported.
Police found a gun “pushed into the seat cushion of the passenger side front seat,” the affidavit said, according to the report.
The affidavit said that in addition to being “highly upset” while driving and “dishonest” about where the gun was located, Bradley “displays signs of an individual who could potentially put the public and other motor vehicle operators at risk for road rage incidents.”
Bradley was locked up in the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of aggravated assault and threatening to use a weapon in a fight, KSL reported.
Incidents in which a driver threatened another with a gun totaled 97 from 2015 through 2019, police said.
Then came 31 in 2020, 36 in 2021 and 29 through October alone.
UHP Major Jeff Nigbur said he believed some of that change was related to the pandemic.
“We have to assume that has added another layer of stress for everyone,” Nigbur said, according to Gephardt Daily.
“I don’t know the exact correlation with the pandemic as to the psychology, but we are also seeing an increase in speeds, impaired driving and other increasingly risky behaviors in the same time frame,” said Sgt. Cameron Roden, UHP public information officer.
Nigbur said drivers need to take their emotions down a notch.
“It’s really important people try to calm down. This is not how adults handle problems,” he said.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.