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Rollover attributed to ‘mutual road rage’

A rollover crash on Keizer Station Boulevard involving a 17-year-old Keizer Police Department (KPD) cadet and a 29-year-old man is being attributed to road rage after an investigation by the Marion County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO).

About 6:50 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, Keizer police and the Keizer Fire District were dispatched to a crash involving two vehicles near the intersection of Lockhaven Drive Northeast and Keizer Station Boulevard Northeast. One of the vehicles flipped and came to a rest on its top on the roadway while the other involved vehicle left the scene immediately after the crash occurred.

Responding officers recognized the 1985 Ford Bronco that was resting on its roof as belonging to an off-duty KPD cadet. He has been with the department since May 2016.

Because of the possible conflict of interest, MCSO deputies were called in to investigate. Their investigation determined both drivers were mutually involved in a road rage incident. Both drivers were allegedly speeding and driving recklessly just prior to the crash. Deputies believe the other involved driver, 29-year-old Juan C. Vazquez of Keizer, cut off the 17-year-old and slammed on his brakes causing the cadet to turn his vehicle in an effort to avoid a collision. Doing so caused his vehicle to leave the roadway and flip as it traveled up an embankment.

After the crash, Vazquez left the scene, but he was later found at his residence where he was taken into custody for reckless driving and six counts of recklessly endangering another person.

The 17-year-old was taken to the Salem Hospital for evaluation and treatment of minor injuries that were caused by the crash.  He will be referred to the Marion County Juvenile Department for the same charges. He was the only one of the Bronco’s four occupants that was injured.