FRANKLIN (Somerset) – A Somerset man was charged with attempted murder after what authorities say was a road rage incident in the area near the I-287 intersection on May 5.
Gerald Chapman, 39, was charged with first-degree attempted murder and second-degree possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose, Somerset County Prosecutor John McDonald said.
Around 4:50 p.m. on May 5, a Franklin Township resident was driving northbound on Easton Avenue when Chapman’s vehicle attempted to merge in front of their car. The victim said that there was no room to merge and Chapman allegedly became irate and slapped the passenger side mirror of the victim’s car, according to the prosecutor’s office.
While the victim was checking the mirror for damage, Chapman pulled alongside, brandished a firearm, fired two rounds in the victim’s direction striking the vehicle, and fled, McDonald said.
The victim reported the incident and an investigation by township police, the prosecutor’s office and the FBI, identified Chapman as the driver of the vehicle, McDonald said.
Chapman turned himself in to the Franklin Township Police Department on May 19.
He is currently in the Somerset County jail pending a detention hearing,
Anyone with information is asked contact the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit at 908-231-7100 or the Franklin Township Police Department at 732-873-5533.
Alexander Lewis is an award-winning reporter and photojournalist whose work spans many topics. This coverage is only possible with support from our readers. Sign up today for a digital subscription.