Reporting John Lauritsen
ALEXANDRIA (WCCO) — A moment of road rage backfired on a western Minnesota man when he allegedly directed his anger at two off-duty sheriff’s deputies.
“Dumb” and “dangerous” is how Sgt. Brad Brejcha of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department summed up what happened on Highway 27 Saturday afternoon.
According to Brejcha, Scott Tarczon, 37, of Villard turned onto the highway at around 4:30 p.m. While driving west towards Alexandria, he was passed by another car and — for some reason — lost his temper. According to Brejcha, he started swerving and tailgating the other car, and he then took his rage a step further.
“All of the sudden, he displayed a hand gun that they could clearly see,” said Brejcha.
What Tarczon apparently didn’t know is that the men he was waving his gun at were off-duty sheriff’s deputies. After about a minute, he turned off on County Road 17, which is when the deputies turned around and began following him.
The deputies got his license plate number, called it into dispatch and on-duty deputies showed up at Tarczon’s house a short time later. They arrested him and also found drugs in his car.
“It sounds like to me that he wasn’t the most cooperative person in the world,” said Brejcha.
Tarczon now faces five criminal charges, four of them felonies for second-degree assault and terroristic threats — all for a minute of alleged road rage.
Authorities say it’s a reminder to play it cool, because you never know who’s in the other car.
“You also don’t know what that other person is going to do. So, you may be the one that’s gonna carry out the road rage, and it could get turned back on you just as fast,” said Brejcha. “The other person — maybe the person that has the firearm — maybe is the person that doesn’t have the patience to put up with you.”
Tarczon is in the Douglas County Jail.
Brejcha said it did not appear he was drinking or on drugs.
The investigation is on-going, but Brejcha said the deputies did the right thing in this case: they called on-duty deputies, which is his advice to anyone who may be the target of a road rage incident.