VIDEO: Suspects smash car windows in SJ road rage incident, nearly blinding dog inside

Zach Fuentes Image
Thursday, November 30, 2023
VIDEO: Dog nearly blinded in SJ road rage incident
Suspects were caught on video punching car windows during a road rage incident in San Jose, injuring the driver and nearly blinding a dog inside.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- In San Jose, a dog and a driver are recovering after a road rage incident nearly blinded the animal. The incident was all captured on camera.

Bambi, a Maltipoo who's a little more than a year old, is recovering after being nearly blinded in the road rage incident.

"It's still like left him very disabled in a way," said James who was driving the car Bambi was in and did not want to give away his full identity out of fear.

Image of Bambi, a maltipoo hurt during a road rage incident in San Jose, Calif. on Nov. 11, 2023.
Image of Bambi, a maltipoo hurt during a road rage incident in San Jose, Calif. on Nov. 11, 2023.

San Jose police say it happened on Nov. 11 in the area of Capital Expressway and Tully Road.

A driver in the area shot the video of the incident. That video showed two people who were already outside of a silver BMW they were driving in; they confronted James in his car that Bambi and another dog were in.

INTERACTIVE: Take a look at the ABC7 Neighborhood Safety Tracker

Shortly after, another driver jumped out of a different nearby car, walked over and jumped on the back window, smashing it.

"The windows are shattered all over the backseat, all over the front seat," James said.

Glass covered Bambi's body and got into his eyes.

MORE: Bay Area road rage victim grateful to be alive after unprovoked I-280 shooting, daughter says

James said he believes the drivers were mad at him for not driving past the speed limit.

"He started like waving middle fingers and like hand signs, and I kind of rolled down the window and asked him like, 'Hey, what's up? Is there something wrong? Did I do something wrong?' James reflected, "I guess he got really like agitated and mad with that."

James tried driving away but says that the car followed him.

Things got violent when they came to a stop.

"The first person who was following me got out of his car with his friend, started punching me through the window," James said.

Shortly after is when the person in the other car smashed the window.

MORE: Road rage shooting in San Lorenzo leaves man dead; his wife recalls hearing gunshots on FaceTime

James says he did not know any of the suspects prior to the incident.

San Jose police say the people in the two cars that approached James are all connected.

The suspect who jumped on the back window was arrested and faces felony vandalism, battery and animal abuse.

"It is all a very dangerous situation that they engaged in," said Stacie Shih, a San Jose Police Department spokesperson, "Really jeopardized not only the driver, the occupants and the dogs, but the people around them."

SJPD said they don't track the number of road rage incidents, but just the charges that can result from them such as assault.

The ABC7 News data team did analyze CHP numbers of crashes involving some of the common factors leading to road rage incidents.

App users: For a better experience, click here to view the graph in a new window.

Factors like unsafe speed, following too closely and unsafe lane changes were tracked.

Unsafe speed led the factors, trending up this year after a low in 2020.

Police say if you find yourself in a potential road rage incident, don't engage.

"I think it's important to always take a step back," Shih said adding, "I'm not saying that road rage is justifiable but you never know where someone is coming from. With that said, everyone is responsible for following the rules of the road."

Police say the suspect who was arrested, the man who jumped and smashed the window, is the primary one but they are still working to identify the other people who were in the second car.

Now Streaming 24/7 Click Here

If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live