Air Force Sergeant Arrested In Road Rage Gun Incident

( – On Dember 5th in Surprise, Arizona, 19-year-old Shi ‘Anna Bamba dropped her younger siblings off at school and set out for home. In the process of her return drive, she encountered 40-year-old Air Force Master Sgt. Charles Bass III who reacted badly to her attempt to merge into the lane in front of him. According to Bamba she didn’t complete the merge because Bass began to drive erratically. She merged into the lane behind him instead and that’s when she said he made a rude gesture and she began recording the incident.

Pulling up to a stoplight beside Bass, she recorded him pointing a firearm at her. He can also be heard her angrily accusing her of cutting him off and asking if she wants to die. She says she immediately pulled away and then frightened, contacted her mother. She then notified the Surprise Police Department and shared her recording with them. Her father saw Bass’ truck later that day and took a photo of the license plate which he then shared with the police.

Bass turned himself in, confirmed his involvement in the incident and was taken into custody by the US Marshals Task Force, the US Air Force and Surprise police on December 12. Bass is being charged with endangerment, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, disorderly conduct with a weapon. He is blaming the incident on his PTSD and hypervigilance issues. A spokeswoman with the 56th Fighter Wing at Luke Air Force Base said Bass was on active duty and assigned to the base at the time of his arrest. Bass has been with the Air Force for 21 years.

Bass believed Bamba was driving erratically, and when she initially pulled up next to him at the stoplight and lowered her window, he raised his weapon because he didn’t know “what could happen”. He offered no explanation as to why he raised it a second time. He can be seen with his finger on the trigger the second time he raised his weapon in the recording. The US Air Force has declined to make further statements as the investigation is still ongoing.

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