‘A bad day is no excuse’: Tennessee man remembers moment road rage turned into gunshots

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LA VERGNE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Seven gunshots fired into a single car, while the victim walked away unharmed, the trauma from that day follows Dusty Mendenhall, of La Vergne.

“Two shots is how long it took me to realize it was gunfire, and that I needed to get out of the way,” said Mendenhall.

Mendenhall was headed home from work, when his normal drive on Interstate-24 turned frightening.

Mendenhall described how he watched as another driver drove in and out of traffic, crossed four lanes, and suddenly cut him off. However, it’s what came next that took him by surprise.

“Snuck up into my blind spot, I couldn’t see him in the mirrors, and it was almost strategic, and then he starts unloading from my blind spot,” remembered Mendenhall.

At least seven shots were fired into his car. Multiple bullet holes left behind showed the potentially deadly impact the gunfire had.

“When you hear it hitting your car, and the bullets flying around you, I can see somebody’s first reaction would be to just swerve off the interstate,” said Mendenhall.

Following the shooter at a safe distance in order to get the license plate, Mendenhall called the police. His next call was to his wife.

“One of the bullets they picked out of the back seat, which is where my newborn sits – my 6-month old daughter,” Mendenhall said. “I’m just glad that they weren’t with me because that could have ended up real bad.”

This is just one case of road rage in Middle Tennessee, that has left people like Mendenhall asking the question, why?

“The only answer I got out of the situation was, he said he was having a bad day and that was it. Nothing about me. We didn’t know each other. Never seen the car before. It was just my unlucky day,” Mendenhall said. “For a human life to just be taken out for a bad day is no excuse, could never be an excuse.”

Now, he’s urging others to be vigilant on the road.

The shooter has been identified as 24-year old Caleb Hancock. Hancock is being charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and is set to go to trial next month.

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