Stabbing Death Raises Concerns About Road Rage

Sunday, May 18th 2008, 8:59 am
By: News On 6

Prosecutors decide what charges to file in a case police call deadly road rage.  News On 6 anchor Terry Hood reports Alexander Busby turned himself into police nearly eight hours after John Hines died from eight stab wounds.

Alexander Busby's attorney admits road rage played a factor, but says it was self-defense.  As we learned on Monday, there are no easy answers to find an end to road rage.

Hines was coming home from a family party Saturday afternoon.  He died after being stabbed on the off-ramp at Delaware and I-244.

"Seems to me that it was just a hot-headed mistake," said Laura Colberg, victim's sister.

The suspect, 38-year-old Alexander Busby, admitted to police he stabbed Hines after their two vehicles began driving close to each other on I-244.  It's being called road rage by investigators, something Jim Lovett is very familiar with.

"Most of the time they're thinking that it's being done to them deliberately," said Jim Lovett of Alliance of Tulsa.

Lovett counsels drivers accused of losing their temper while behind the wheel.  He says he's seen the number of road rage incidents rise just in the past few years.

Triple A says the number of deaths attributed to road rage has increased by 7% every year since 1990.  Green Country has seen its share, this past March three accidents resulted from two cars clipping each other on the Broken Arrow Expressway.

Last July, a Tulsa man was killed after confronting someone he thought had cut him off near Riverside Drive.

In August 2006 in Pryor, a 29-year-old man was stabbed in the face after a truck driver claimed the man clipped his truck.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says one of the best ways to fight road rage is have clear and tough laws that distinguish between aggressive driving and road rage.

But, police say that's not easy to do and there are no laws in Oklahoma that would up the penalty if road rage is determined to be a factor.  Counselor Jim Lovett doesn't believe that would work anyway.

"Giving them a ticket is not going to do you any good. You've got to change their attitude and the people that have road rage is the people that generally have an anger issue to begin with," said Jim Lovett of Alliance of Tulsa.

Investigators say tougher laws may not be necessary.

For example, if the road rage escalates off the highway and there's an altercation, authorities will usually charge them with a criminal offense instead of a traffic violation.

Alexander Busby is being held on one count of murder.

Related story:

5/17/2008  Road Rage May Have Led To Fatal Stabbing