2017-06-16 / Community

Knife, bat drawn in road rage incident

By Kyle Jorrey

A rookie Simi Valley police officer returning from court was in the right place at the right time to intercede in a potentially deadly confrontation Monday on the 101 Freeway in Thousand Oaks.

According to the California Highway Patrol, CHP dispatch began receiving calls around 2:37 p.m. June 12 about a road rage incident between two drivers, one in a silver Lexus and the other in a white Chevy pick-up truck, on the southbound 101 at Wendy Drive.

As stunned drivers looked on, the two men, identified as 21-year-old Clausen Boyd of Thousand Oaks and 46-year-old Paul Farrell of Agoura Hills, pulled onto the shoulder of the southbound freeway at Moorpark Road and prepared to fight, CHP said, Boyd wielding a baseball bat, Farrell a pocketknife.

At some point, CHP said, Boyd struck Farrell with the bat, but before it could escalate any further, Officer Travis White of the Simi Valley Police Department arrived on scene.

“It was my day off, but I’d been subpoenaed to appear in court so I was just hoping to get off at a reasonable hour,” White told the Acorn in an interview. “At first it appeared to be an accident, so I started to slow down to assist.”

When he got close enough, White said, he could see Boyd swinging the bat at Farrell. He did not see Farrell’s knife, he said.

Taking action, the first-year officer swung his police vehicle into the third southbound lane to block traffic before exiting and drawing his gun, ordering both men to drop their weapons. They complied.

Ventura County sheriff’s deputies arrived a short while later followed by CHP.

CHP arrested Boyd on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and Farrell on suspicion of exhibiting a deadly weapon, a press release said.

In a press statement released June 12 by the highway patrol, R.D. Cohan, lieutenant commander of CHP’s Moorpark station, said the situation was “completely unnecessary.”

“We encourage drivers to just slow down, take a breath, operate their vehicles like the potential deadly weapons they could be (when not driven carefully) and be courteous to others,” Cohan said. “Is letting your ‘road rage’ out really worth being arrested, taken to jail and having your car towed away?”

The initial cause of the incident is still under investigation, CHP Officer Randy Tackett said.

Acorn reporter Becca Whitnall contributed to this story.

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