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WAUSAU (WAOW) - Wausau Police said road rage on Highway 29 took a violent turn on Tuesday afternoon.
"They got into some type of altercation out there on the highway which included one vehicle ramming the other vehicle," said Chief Deputy Bryan Hilts.
Police said after two cars collided near the intersection of County Highway O, the drivers called police.
Both drivers stopped at Menard's in Wausau and that's when Scott Van Patter said the situation took an ugly turn.
"I was trying to get out of the car to defend myself or try to get in the car," said Van Patter.
Police said Nicholas Flanagan and Jessica Ratliff jumped out of their vehicle in a rage. Witnesses said the two forced open Van Patter's car doors and started to hit him and stab him with a key.
"I keep replaying it in my mind, over and over again -- what I could have done differently," said Van Patter.
But officials said after the altercation began, Van Patter, who has a concealed carry license, pulled out his gun.
"I felt like I was in imminent danger and it didn't really leave me any choice," said Van Patter.
But Flanagan tells Newsline 9 he believes they were the victims. Flanagan said they were hit on the highway and that Van Patter initiated the fight.
Now, as officials look into what happened, they said witnesses have helped.
"Statements from the witnesses that really make this clear for us," said Hilts.
Police said they will continue to investigate.
Flanagan and Ratliff were released from Marathon County Jail on $650 dollars cash bond. Police are recommending charges of battery and disorderly conduct for the two. Flanagan and Ratliff have not been charged yet.
A 49-year-old Appleton man called 911 from Highway 29 Tuesday afternoon saying the van he had just passed was ramming his SUV from behind. The dispatcher told the caller to pull off the road and wait for officers.
The SUV driver says the van followed and the couple inside began hitting him and stabbing him with car keys. The driver then pulled out his gun and pointed it at the two until police arrived.
The couple was booked on possible charges of battery and disorderly conduct. Authorities say the SUV driver has a permit to carry a concealed weapon.
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