Driver Says He Was Shot At Before Fiery Fall River Crash

FALL RIVER (CBS) – The driver of a truck involved in a fiery crash on Route 79 under the Braga Bridge in Fall River told WBZ-TV he was the victim of road rage.

Out of the hospital on Monday, 42-year-old Luis Cotto told WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields that a black sedan cut him off on the road early Sunday morning. Cotto said he flashed his high beams, which he said angered the driver in the car. When both vehicles pulled over, a group men from the car allegedly beat up Cotto.

“I got hit from behind, and fell down,” says Cotto. “Then, they were all kicking me in the head.”

Cotto said he then crawled back to his truck and started to drive away, but said he saw flashes from a gun, heard four or five shots and crashed.

WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields reports

“I heard three or four shots, and I ducked under the dashboard,” says Cotto. That’s when he struck a guardrail, and his truck burst into flames. “The explosion hit me right in my chest,” he says.

“We are aware that the victim of the crash has made statements…about alleged events that he said occurred prior to the crash. At this time, we are not commenting on those statements,” said State Police spokesperson Dave Procopio, in a statement.

Cotto said he then managed to escape the truck through a window and was later pulled to safety by a state trooper.

“Trooper Allyson Powell’s heroics in pulling an injured driver from a fiery wreck – for the second time in as many years – were truly remarkable, and epitomize the highest ideals of the Massachusetts State Police. The victim might well not be alive today were it not for the trooper’s actions,” Procopio said, in a statement.

“If it wasn’t for that State Police, I want to say thanks to her,” says Cotto. “She saved my life.”

WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields contributed to this report.

  • Bobo Nemo

    this is never going to fly.

  • Scooby

    why not

    • George Bush

      I met an older man that had a similar incident happen around there. A bunch of black kids beat him with bats and now he is deaf in one ear. Don’t stop and get out unless you have a gun or are not afraid of a bloody fight that is most likely unfair.

  • JDS

    Black sedan — and I’m betting black occupants as well. They’re cowards so they carry guns and act in groups. Too chicken to do anything hand to hand and one one one.

  • 1stackmack

    the road rage is getting worse and worse around here.l don’t know if its attitude or just no one gives a fling funk about anything but themselves.especially toward truckers.what do people think is going to happen when a car cuts in front of a loaded truck with inches to spare.he’s going to get a flash of the lights,a blast of horn( in my case,i have a train horn),and or a flip of the bird.or much worse a bull dog in the back seat from the impact.

    • George Bush

      You talk about road rage and yet you have a train horn? You like to provoke people, very cowardly in my opinion.

    • Italo

      I think the road rage trend is happening because it is being increasingly viewed in society as something cool and acceptable. Everyday now, many of us experience or see vehicles, especially larger and faster ones, tailgating or otherwise purposely harassing drivers who, for example, may be driving properly and right at the speed limit, and in their correct lane. Those behind them don’t want to go around them, so they intimidate them right on their rear bumpers. What do they think that this will accomplish, either, except for a big accident, injuries, and maybe a lawsuit or insurance premium hikes? And yet, these road ragers are probably the same people who worship with humility at the very feet of our Boston team athletes and swear that nothing in our lives is more important than their winning a championship each year. Ugh.

  • sean

    doesn’t sound like a credible story

  • George Bush

    This area is full of inconsiderate, no mannered, ghetto slime.

  • whitness

    the story isnt credible, i live 2 blocks from the crash, the trooper was there in less that 1 min, if thats the case, why didnt the cop see the people shooting, and if the car was behind the truck there would have been nowhere to go.. the truck blew up blocking the road, the overpass is one lane and completely blocked. if the car had backed up the wrong way to get to the nearest exit to leave, wouldnt the police have seen this??? maybe the driver left out the part where he was smoking crack and binge drinking just before the crash…

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