Silverthorne man arrested for brandishing gun during road rage incident
A Silverthorne man was arrested on a menacing charge late last month after allegedly flashing a gun at a woman while in traffic.
On Jan. 26, officers with the Dillon Police Department were dispatched to the corner of Dillon Ridge Road and U.S. Highway 6 on a possible road rage incident involving a gun.
The alleged victim in the case said she was leaving the City Market parking lot when a man pulled up behind her and began “revving his engine” in an attempt to get her to turn right on a red light, according to a police report of the incident. The man, later identified as 22-year-old Takoda Castillo, allegedly continued yelling and “gesticulating with his hands” until the woman eventually gave him the middle finger and turned right onto the highway.
The woman made her way past Exit 205 and onto Colorado Highway 9, where Castillo allegedly caught up with her in the left lane and “waved a big black gun” at her, according to the report. After consulting her fiance on the phone, the woman called police and provided Castillo’s license plate number.
Dillon officers joined up with a pair of deputies from the Summit County Sheriff’s Office to contact Castillo. They went to his residence in Silverthorne and took him into custody, along with placing a fully loaded handgun into evidence.
According to the report, Castillo told officers he didn’t understand why people in the area were so “rude” and said he didn’t point his gun at the woman; he just waved it around so that she could see it.
Castillo was taken to the Summit County Detention Facility without incident and booked on a charge of menacing, a class-five felony. Castillo is scheduled to appear March 11 on bond at the Summit County Justice Center.
Road rage on the rise
While this is somewhat of a radical example, law enforcement leaders around the county said that instances of road rage have been increasing.
“It’s definitely been on the rise,” Summit County Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons said. “With more congestion we’ve seen up here, and record numbers of drivers and increases in commuter traffic from other counties, we’ve seen an increase in those conflicts.”
FitzSimons said road rage incidents can be difficult to track because there is no standard classification for those types of crimes, noting they typically come across the radio as assaults, driving hazards, disputes or other incident types. He continued to say that addressing the rise in road disputes would be a priority as his office moves forward with the development of a dedicated traffic unit.
“This was an extreme case for sure,” Dillon Police Chief Mark Heminghous said. “But I would say anecdotally that we’re hearing more and more road rage calls coming across the radio. Whether it’s people driving carelessly and that leads to someone getting upset, or maybe someone gets cut off and the next thing you know we have a road rage incident.
“You turn on the news and you see it weekly — gun play as a result of a traffic incident. Luckily those are still the extreme cases up here. But unfortunately we are seeing them.”