EAU CLAIRE — An Eau Claire man has the opportunity to avoid a criminal conviction in connection with a road rage incident on Clairemont Avenue in January.
Colten T. Baggs, 20, 2720 W. Folsom St., pleaded guilty Wednesday in Eau Claire County Court to a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct. Misdemeanor counts of pointing a firearm at another person and hit and run attended vehicle were dismissed.
As part of a one-year deferred agreement with prosecutors, the disorderly conduct charge will be dismissed if Baggs pays a $250 fine and an undetermined amount of restitution, commits no new crimes, performs 40 hours of community service and has no contact with the victim.
According to the criminal complaint:
An Eau Claire police officer went to a restaurant on Truax Boulevard on Jan. 13 to meet with a teen about a hit-and-run crash that occurred minutes earlier in the 900 block of West Clairemont Avenue.
At the same time, dispatchers broadcast a report of a reckless driver near Clairemont Avenue and Menomonie Street. The make and model of the suspect vehicle in the reckless driver case was the same as the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run crash. The vehicle was registered to Baggs.
The teen said he and his female passenger were westbound on West Clairemont Avenue when Baggs’ vehicle passed him and then changed lanes in front of him, which caused Baggs’ rear bumper to hit the front passenger side bumper of the teen’s vehicle.
Baggs did not stop. The teen’s passenger was able to take a picture of the rear license plate on Baggs’ vehicle.
The teen said he was scared and didn’t know what to do, so he called his father. The teen’s father told him to call the police.
The teen pulled his vehicle over when Baggs then displayed a handgun.
After speaking with the teen, the responding police officer then went to Baggs’ residence.
The officer saw a black pistol tucked between the front passenger seat and the center console of Baggs’ vehicle. It appeared to be a pellet pistol.
The damage on Bagg’s bumper was consistent with the damage on the teen’s vehicle. Baggs first denied he had been involved in a crash. He also denied displaying a gun.
When the officer told Baggs he believed he was lying, Baggs said the teen was the one who instigated the incident by the way he was driving.
Baggs then admitted to displaying the pellet pistol. Baggs said he did this to intimidate the teen for following him.
Baggs said he just wanted to be left alone.