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Lawsuit filed after what police call a road-rage-shooting in Lehi

Utah Highway Patrol troopers investigate a road rage shooting that left two people injured on I-15 in Lehi on Monday, Jan. 25, 2021. 📸 Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — Five men involved in what police called a road rage shooting on I-15 last month in Lehi have filed a suit against the suspected gunman for $25 million.

In a statement to the Deseret News, the attorney for the men said the lawsuit is being filed to showcase behavior that is unacceptable.

“There is no place for ‘wild west gun slinging on the interstate,'” the statement read.

The alleged shooter, Jesse David Luker, 31, of Salt Lake City, was arrested and booked into the Utah County Jail on January 25, 2021. He was later charged with three counts of attempted murder.

Lehi road rage

Jesse Luker, age 31, was booked into the Utah County jail on charges of aggravated assault after involvement in what police called a road rage incident on southbound I-15 in late January 2021. Photo: Utah County Sheriff’s Office

The lawsuit alleges that Luker was frustrated that the car with the five men in it was driving the speed limit in the carpool lane.

According to the Deseret News, the men suing Luker are passengers, George Acosta Ruiz, Paul Bernardino, Eduardo Hernandez, and Jose Antonio Vazquez as well as the driver, Edgar Escamilla.  In the suit, the five men allege battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligence.

What happened that morning in the road rage shooting

According to police documents, Luker was traveling south on I-15 between the point of the mountain and the Lehi Main Street exit. Luker drove a black pickup. Police records show that George Ruiz-Acosta was driving ahead of Luka on southbound I-15 in a white pickup.

According to witness statements, both vehicles were participating in a road rage incident by swerving at each other as they continued southbound. 

When interviewed by police, the suspect admitted that he shot at least four bullets at the white truck and that he was aiming for the tires on the truck.

Luker also reportedly admitted that he was driving 70 miles per hour as he shot his firearm out of his front passenger window.

KSL Newsradio previously reported that the driver of the white truck continued driving to American Fork Hospital. Police records show that two occupants of the white truck, the driver and left passenger, had both been injured by gunshots.