Investigation into apparent road rage incident continues

| 11/5/2007

State police in Vermont hope that by Wednesday, Nov. 7, they’ll have wrapped up their investigation in the death of a woman who was run over by a tractor-trailer following an apparent heated exchange of words with the driver.

According to police, the woman and her adult daughter were upset with the trucker because they thought he almost hit their car when they slowed down for another vehicle.

The two followed trucker Delbert Degree for 21 miles until he pulled off into a lot near St. Johnsbury, VT, that his company uses to drop off trailers.

The daughter told investigators she went to look for a police officer while her mother stood in front of the stopped truck to prevent Degree from leaving.

At that point, the truck pulled out and the woman was killed.

State police detective J.P. Sinclair told “Land Line Now” on XM Satellite Radio that investigators have tried to reconstruct whether Degree could have seen the woman over the hood of his Peterbilt.

And, he said, they’ve gathered other evidence.

“We’re lucky enough to have some eyewitnesses that have been very helpful to us, and of course the construction of this particular parking lot is a dirt surface, so we were fortunate that we were able to gain a lot of evidence and reconstruct a lot of what happened,” Sinclair said.

Degree drives for Karl Johnson Trucking out of Lyndonville, VT. Company owner Karl Johnson told The Associated Press the 41-year-old Degree is extremely distraught and that he would never “in a million years” hurt anyone intentionally.

– By Reed Black, staff writer