Florida State Employee Killed In Road Rage Shootout

He may have been the one to start the incident as well, but police are asking for help in getting more details

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Image: Matt Rourke (AP)

Florida news outlets are reporting that a former state official was killed during a road rage incident. Outlets also report it was an incident he may have started.

While there are still conflicting reports, investigators say they have a fairly good idea of what happened due to anonymous sources. On January 6, John Kuczwanski, the former director of legislative affairs for the Florida State Board of Administration, was driving his BMW in Tallahassee when he drifted out of his lane, hitting a Prius in the next lane.

As what anyone would do in an accident like that, both cars pulled off the main road and into the parking lot of a Circle K. The Prius driver confronted Kuczwanski over hitting him, then returned to his car to wait for cops to arrive. That’s when shit got real, according to sources that spoke with Florida Politics:

…that is when, according to Florida Politics’ sources, Kuczwanski rammed his BMW into the Prius on the driver’s door, and began pushing the car sideways in the parking lot.

Kuczwanski then shot a gun at the white Prius, according to the sources. The Prius driver drew a gun and fired back into the windshield of Kuczwanski’s BMW. Kuczwanski was hit and killed, according to the sources.

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The driver of the Prius was said to have taken cover, anticipating Kuczwanski to return fire, which he didn’t for what turned out to be obvious reasons. When authorities arrived on the scene they found Kuczwanski with life-threatening injuries.

When deputies arrived, they found 53-year-old John Kuczwanski with life-threatening injuries,” the Leon County sheriff’s department said on Tuesday. “Deputies and EMS personnel attempted life-saving measures on the scene. Kuczwanski was transported to a local hospital by ambulance, where he was pronounced deceased.

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In addition, if the reports are true, Kuczwanski may have been the one to start this whole thing. It’s not that surprising either as the former Florida official had a history of road rage incidents.

Tallahassee Reports obtained an affidavit from 2014 where Kuczwanski was arrested for “aggravated assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill” for a road rage incident. It happened just eight years prior, at the same intersection where he lost his life. From Tallahassee Reports:

According to the affidavit, a motorist called the Leon County Sheriff’s Office and reported that a “white heavy set male had pointed a small, black in color handgun with a mounted laser at him while stopped next to him at the intersection of Thomasville Road and Bannerman Road.

Based on the information provided in the complaint, an officer was dispatched to a residence and found Mr. Kuczwanski in the driveway still in the drivers seat of his vehicle.

After questioning Kuczwanski, the officer verified that a weapon fitting the description provided in the complaint was in the vehicle. The officer indicated that probable cause existed to warrant an arrest.

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Kuczwanski was sentenced to probation with the stipulation that he not be arrested or possess any weapons. His probation was completed in February 2018.

The driver of the Prius was arrested and later released. But no other charges have been filed so far. The police are asking the public for help with more information regarding the incident while an investigation remains ongoing.

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