Man threatens couple with ax in road rage incident

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By Tris DeRoma

Police arrested a 23-year-old Los Alamos man Monday for allegedly threatening a couple with an ax during a road rage incident. 

Jerry Ray Chase was arrested at the Shell gas station at the intersection of Diamond Drive and Arkansas Avenue. He was initially charged with two counts of aggravated assault (with intent to commit felony) and later charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. 

Police were called to San Ildefonso Road around 9:30 a.m. when eyewitnesses reported being threatened by a man with an ax.

The witnesses, who was driving down San Ildefonso Road in separate vehicles ahead of Ray’s green Ford Explorer. The cars driven by the eyewitnesses stopped in the road to avoid hitting deer crossing San Ildefonso Road. Ray drove around the two cars in front, stopping briefly to yell at the people in the cars before continuing on down San Ildefonso Road. 

At the bottom of the hill near the San Ildefonso Roundabout, the two witnesses saw Ray’s vehicle pulled over to the side of the road. The vehicles stopped in the road to tell Ray why they stopped. 

Ray and another man allegedly then got out of the truck to yell at the eyewitnesses. Ray also allegedly took an ax out of the Ford Explorer and allegedly slammed it the hood of his car before walking over the witnesses and yelling some more.

One of the witnesses drove off while the witness in the other car yelled at Ray and called the police. 

When the police located them at the Shell station, police made contact with the two men as well as female passenger. 

Ray told police it was the witnesses who were yelling at him for driving around them and almost hitting the deer. 

During their interview with the three people, police noticed signs of methamphetamine and marijuana use.

“Based on the information provided… it is believed that Mr. Jerry Chase, or the other occupants of the vehicle committed the crime of possession of a controlled substance,” Cpl. Jemuel Montoya said in his report.