Truckers Murdered, Shot At, and Robbed in a Disturbingly Violent Week
Little Rock, AR – As many major American cities are experiencing a surge in violent crime, so too are truckers… and this week was a disturbing reminder of this reality.
It was a week that saw truckers murdered, attacked by gunfire while driving, and robbed.
The disturbingly dangerous week for truckers began last Saturday afternoon when a truck driver was found shot to death inside his truck parked near the I-57 North and Interstate 80 East interchange at Exit 345A/B in a suburb of Chicago.
The coroner ruled the trucker’s death a homicide, but the circumstances surrounding the incident have not yet been made known.
His identity has also still not yet been released.
On Tuesday, authorities in Michigan indicated a big rig came under a gunfire attack from a motorist at approximately 1:30 p.m. along Interstate 94 in Battle Creek.
According to the Michigan State Police (MSP), the offending vehicle drove along the right shoulder and illegally passed the tractor-trailer when a person fired into the passenger side door.
It remains unclear at this time if the trucker was struck.
Early Wednesday morning the madness continued along I-94 in Milwaukee when a big rig took four bullet holes in a similar attack.
The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) said the incident occurred just after 2 a.m.
Investigators said the truck driver indicated that as he was traveling in the westbound lanes of I-94 he saw a passenger vehicle alongside swerve toward his truck.
He then described hearing four of five gunshots ring out.
The truck driver, whose identity has not been released, was not struck.
Now we move from the Midwest to the South, where on Wednesday in Tulsa a truck driver attempted to thwart a robbery of his semi-truck and ended up in the hospital.
A motorist pulled up alongside the parked semi and was attempting to steal tools from the truck.
When the truck driver attempted to stop the motorist from fleeing the scene, he was run over and crashed through the motorist’s windshield.
He suffered non-life threatening injuries.
Then, an absolutely bizarre incident took place in Benjamin, TX on Thursday morning when a gunman opened fire on a big rig and multiple other vehicles along Highway 82.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS), a trucker hauling a load to Lubbock came upon a Ford Mustang partially blocking the roadway.
The trucker told a local news outlet that when he slowed his big rig, a male, now identified as Chase Rountree, got out of the car and began firing.
The trucker then tried backing up, but he ultimately exited the vehicle and began running from the scene as quickly as he could.
In an effort to find cover, the trucker said he jumped onto another commercial motor vehicle — a moving truck operated by Charitable Movers & Packers.
The gunman and a female, now identified as Mychele Mendez, who was a passenger in the suspect’s car, then allegedly entered the trucker’s semi and drove away.
Police later caught up with the big rig before eventually neutralizing the threat by shooting Rountree after he exited the truck and refused to drop his weapon.
Thankfully, the trucker was uninjured in the ordeal.
Heading out West, the Oregon State Police (OSP) issued a warning to truckers and motorists this week about a series of recent shootings along I-5 between Roseburg and Grants Pass.
Just in the last few weeks, OSP said five shootings have been reported and one involving a semi-truck.
Truckers Found Dead
This week has also been a brutal week as multiple truckers were found dead inside their big rigs.
The first came Saturday night when a trucker was found deceased inside his big rig parked near a gas station in Hesperia, CA.
Foul play in that case is not suspected, according to Hesperia police.
Then Monday, a 62-year-old trucker and his dog were discovered dead inside his semi-truck parked at a Barstow, CA truck stop.
Transportation Nation Network (TNN) spoke to family members of Gary Bybee after he was discovered Monday morning.
Bybee’s daughter, Trina, said her father had been proud trucker for over 40 years.
Bybee’s son, Dustin, also told TNN, “He’s sorely missed and the heavy-hearted son says goodbye.”
Bybee’s faithful sidekick, a Shih Tzu named Al, was also found deceased, likely from heat exhaustion, authorities indicated.
This week was a stark and sobering reminder of all that truckers go through just to put food on the table while keeping food on everyone else’s tables also.
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