A US Marine veteran was killed during a road rage incident in South Florida, but not before he managed to take his attacker down with him.
Davie Police report that 41-year-old veteran Keith Byrne acted in self-defense during a deadly shootout last Friday, a tragic incident that was sparked by a simple misunderstanding.
Byrne had initially cut off a BMW in traffic as he drove his pickup down Flamingo Road, and was attempting to apologize to the female driver when the BMW’s passenger door suddenly opened.
Exiting the vehicle was the driver’s boyfriend, 22-year-old Andre Sinclair, who produced a firearm as his 19-month-old sat in the back seat.
“At that point, the driver, Mr. Sinclair’s girlfriend, had grabbed him by the shirt, tried to prevent him from getting out of the vehicle,” said Davie Police Lt. Mark Leone told WSVN. “He did get out armed with a gun and went towards the work truck.”
Byrne, who was on the phone with a friend at the time, attempted to quell the situation.
“My bad,” he was heard saying.
Unfortunately, sincerity was not enough to stop an enraged Sinclair, and Byrne was forced to open fire.
While it is unclear who shot first, Lieutenant Leone said that Byrne had acted in self-defense.
“Mr. Byrne was acting in self-defense when he ultimately fired back,” Leone said.
Still on the phone at the time of the incident, Byrne told his friend that he thought he may have been shot in the exchange.
Byrne died shortly after, while Sinclair succumbed to his wounds several days later. Authorities say the latter would have been charged with murder if he had survived the shooting.
The Marine veteran leaves behind a 21-year-old son and two daughters, ages 19 and 17.
“He was a jokester. He was very playful,” said Justyn Byrne, the 41-year-old’s son.
The family is still reeling from the loss.
“His birthday is next month, and he and his fiance were planning a trip to Costa Rica,” added Irene Colavolpe, the victim’s mother. “All of those things, they just hurt so bad.”
Lieutenant Leone of Davie PD urged the public to avoid confronting people during road rage incidents, even if it’s simply to apologize.
“Leave the area, even if you have to turn on a different street,” he said.
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