Boise Police Department
News Release

Michael F. Masterson
Chief of Police


Contact: Lynn Hightower
Communications Director
570-6180

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Friday, March 13, 2009

03-13-09 Road Rage leads to Arrest on Battery, Assault charges

03-13-09 Road Rage leads to Arrest on Battery, Assault charges

    Boise, March 13, 2009 - Boise Police responded to the calls of several citizens who were witnessing a serious road rage attack at the intersection of Maple Grove and Fairview earlier today. One man has been arrested on three felony counts following the attack. Currently, both the suspect and a victim are at a local hospital being treated for injuries.

    Arrested: John Deblieck, 69, Boise

    Charges: Aggravated Battery (F), 2 cts Aggravated Assault (F)

    Boise Police began receiving calls from witnesses at 1:13 p.m. this afternoon. The witnesses were reporting a violent attack between motorists in the southbound lanes of Maple Grove at Fairview. The attack stopped after one witness pulled the suspect away from the one of the victims, and the suspect got back in his car and drove off.

    Boise Police found the suspect driving a short distance away. 

    Kudos to Witnesses: "The witnesses in this case did exactly what they should do, as soon as they saw the suspect act aggressively, they called police," said Lt. Bryan Hagler, of the Boise Police Department Patrol Division. 

    "We never encourage witnesses to get involved, we always encourage people to call police for their own safety. But each of us, knowing our own capabilities, has to make our own decisions. In this case, the witnesses got police to the scene quickly, and helped get the suspect away from these two victims. We really want to thank the citizens who helped out." said Lt. Hagler. 

    "Road rage calls rarely turn violent." said Lt. Hagler. "If a motorist ever sees anyone driving dangerously or aggressively, for everyone's safety, be a good witness and report it to 9-1-1." 

    Boise Police Chief Michael Masterson did call one of the witnesses today, the young man who helped pull the suspect away from the victims. Chief Masterson thanked the young man, on behalf of Boise Police for exceptional efforts.

    What Happened: After interviewing several witnesses and the two victims, preliminary reports from investigating officers say the incident began about 1:00 p.m. on Eagle Rd. at Island Woods Dr. in Eagle. 

    A Boise woman was driving with her husband eastbound on Island Woods Dr. The woman had stopped the car, a Ram Charger sedan, on Island Woods Dr. and her husband had gotten out of the car to help another motorist pick up lumber that had fallen into the roadway on Eagle Rd. As the man helped pick up the lumber, the suspect in his car, a black Ford Focus, was behind the Charger waiting to pass on Island Woods Dr. 

    When the woman in the Charger turned south on Eagle Rd., both she and her husband say the suspect's vehicle followed, with the suspect making rude gestures toward them as he passed. The couple in the Charger continued on, turning east on Chinden. They tell officers they noticed the suspect's vehicle, trying to keep up with them as the turned south on Maple Grove. Finally, the suspect vehicle caught up on Maple Grove at Fairview, pulling alongside and just ahead of the Charger in the southbound lanes. Witnesses say the suspect Deblieck left his car parked in the lane of traffic, got out and approached the passenger side of the Charger. 

    The husband, got out of the passengers side of Charger. He tells officers he told the suspect he did not want to fight. However. according to victims and witnesses, the suspect argued with him, then began punching him. The male victim suffered several blows. The victim's wife then gets out of car and tries to pull the suspect away from her husband. The suspect, according to witnesses, punches the wife, reportedly hitting her in the face. The male victim, her husband, then hits the suspect in the head with an ASP, a small expandable baton. The victim is able to injure the suspect, but does not stop him.

    At this point, a witness, a Boise man in his 20's who was witnessing the attack and calling 9-1-1, had gotten out of his vehicle to intervene. Witnesses say the suspect now has a knife, lashes out as if to stab the female victim, but does not. The witness grabbed the suspect's arm  and was able to push the suspect away from the victim and the victim's vehicle. The witness then says he told the suspect to get back in his car. The suspect did return to his car and drove south on Maple Grove.

    Witnesses gave responding officers the license plate and description of the suspect vehicle. Officers found the suspect driving a short distance away, on Irving St. at Oakwood Lane. Officers placed the suspect under arrest. 

    Injuries: Currently the suspect is being treated for head injuries. The male victim is also being treated for facial injuries.

    Upon release by medical personnel, Boise Police will transport the suspect to the Ada County Jail on the above charges.