HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA (Nov. 23, 2008) — A road rage incident developed after a taxi cab driver and fellow motorist apparently had mutual disdain for each other’s driving styles and began cutting one another off near Euclid Street and the 405 Freeway.
The long unfolding incident concluded with the arrest of Phong Van Trong, 48, of 3218 La Puente, West Covina, for suspicion of robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.
According to Costa Mesa Police, the duel between the two drivers escalated as they traveled through Costa Mesa and got onto the freeway. The taxi driver exited the freeway at Bristol in Costa Mesa and Trong was able to corral the taxi and block it with his car. At that point the two drivers began fist fighting, police said.
During the fight, Trong retrieved a machete from his vehicle and began whacking the taxi driver in the leg with the flat side of the blade, said Costa Mesa Sgt. Jerry Hildeman. The cabbie pulled out his cell phone and attempted to call 911 but Trong snatched the phone, ran back to his car and took off.
The taxi driver quickly followed in hot pursuit.
A witness to the fight called police and also joined the chase, following Trong into Huntington Beach.
Huntington Beach Police Lieutenant Gary Faust said authorities were finally able to bring the episode to a conclusion around 3 a.m. at Beach Boulevard and Warner Avenue where Trong was arrested. Police believe Trong threw the taxi driver’s stolen phone out his car window at some point.
The taxi driver received minor injuries but it was unclear if he required medical treatment.