Ionia Shooting Has Police Reminding Drivers To Be Wary Of Road Rage

By: Anthony Sabella Email
By: Anthony Sabella Email

"Every time I went to his shop to pick up a vehicle or drop it off, he was always courteous and we laughed a lot and said a lot of jokes. He was a great man," said Brenda Grummet.

All was quiet at Wonder Wand Auto Wash in Ionia, Thursday afternoon.

It was a stark contrast from the night before, when an alleged incident of road rage turned deadly for two local men, leaving locals like Brenda Grummet hungry for details.

"I was waiting for the news to appear and tell us what was going on," said Grummet.

Thursday morning, Ionia Public Safety revealed 56-year-old Robert Taylor and 43-year-old James Pullum, both of Ionia, shot and killed each other after pulling into the car wash to resolve a road rage-spurred argument.

Pullum had been Grummet's mechanic for nearly five years.

"He was outgoing. Every time I went to his shop to pick up a vehicle or drop it off, he was always courteous and we laughed a lot and said a lot of jokes. He was a great man," said Grummet.

Grummet, who put up a ribbon in Pullum's honor at the car wash, says he was popular around town and known for his friendliness, which is why she was so confused when she heard it all started with a simple driving mistake.

"I understand it had something to do with somebody not flipping on a blinker," she said. "I just don't understand why some people would use guns to solve a problem."

So, how does a road rage incident turn deadly? Michigan State Trooper Marco Jones says it's all in the drivers' response.

"Let the person go by you and just don't make the glaring eye contact or do anything to further the road rage incident," said Jones.

If you see someone glaring at you or shouting at from their car, the typical signs of road rage, never stop and try to reason with them.

Both Pullum and Taylor had concealed weapons licenses and you never know who else could be carrying a gun.


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