A man draws a gun during a road rage incident in Missoula

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Just before 5 p.m. Saturday, Missoula Police Department officers responded to a road rage incident. The plaintiff said a man driving a red Ford F-150 pointed a gun at him while he was parked at a casino in the 600 block of SW Higgins Avenue. The Complainant told the officer that he was driving near the intersection of Hillview and Russell when he noticed an F-150 following very closely behind him.

The Complainant thought he might know the driver, so he gave him a “peace” sign. The complainant then parked in the casino parking lot. The F-150 followed and parked nearby. The Complainant opened his door and started to get out of his vehicle when he saw the man standing outside the F-150 with a gun drawn.

According to court documents, the man pointed the gun at the complainant. The complainant asked the man if they knew each other. The man called the Complainant an “asshole” and said that the Complainant was driving badly.

The Complainant said he insulted the man and drove away. The man followed the Complainant out of the parking lot and onto the street. At one point, the man rolled down his window and reached out while brandishing the gun and pointing it in the complainant’s direction. The complainant said this happened twice. The plaintiff eventually lost the F-150 and pulled over to wait for law enforcement.

Meanwhile, other officers located the F-150 and initiated a traffic stop. Officers ordered the driver, Beau Rocheleau, 42, out of the vehicle. They took him into custody without incident. At this time, an officer observed a black handgun protruding from the driver’s side door compartment of the F-150. Rocheleau denied ever showing the Complainant his gun.

The officer also noticed that Rocheleau’s eyes were glassy and bloodshot and his speech was slurred. The agent has spoken to Rocheleau in the past on several occasions and knows that this is not Rocheleau’s normal language pattern. Occasionally, the officer also smelled a faint odor of alcohol emanating from Rocheleau, but it was difficult to detect given the sub-freezing temperatures.

The officer arrested Rocheleau, and he was transported to prison by another officer. During the drive, this officer noticed that the smell of alcohol inside his cruiser was getting stronger and stronger. He described it as “overwhelming”. He asked Rocheleau to provide a breath sample and Rocheleau refused. Rocheleau, however, admitted to having consumed four beers that day. Rocheleau has a prior DUI from 2008, so the officer requested a blood warrant. After obtaining a blood sample at the hospital, Rocheleau was taken into custody.

Rocheleau is currently charged with the felony of attempted assault with a weapon and driving under the influence.

The information in this article was obtained from publicly available sources.

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