Fender bender leads to road rage shooting in Haledon

HALEDON, New Jersey (WABC) -- What started out as a car crash in New Jersey quickly escalated into an argument and then a shooting, and now, a brother and sister are facing serious charges.

The incident happened around 3 a.m. on West Clinton Avenue in Haledon last week, after police say 38-year-old Natasha Payton rear-ended the 21-year-old victim near the home she shares with her brother, 26-year-old Chris Conley.

Payton allegedly got out of the car and argued with the other driver, even punching him in the face while he sat in his car. Police say she then called her brother, who rushed to the scene and pointed a gun in the man's face. He reportedly fired one shot, striking the man in the chest, with the bullet exiting through his arm.

The victim called a relative before even calling police, and both suspects fled before officers arrived. They were arrested on Monday.

"If there's a motor vehicle crash, we come out and take a report," Haledon police Lieutenant George Guzman said. "But to have road rage go to violence is completely unacceptable."

The victim was taken to St. Joseph's Medical Center in Paterson.

Mayor Dominick Stampone praised the police work in finding and arresting the suspects.

"It's fortunate that this senseless act of violence did not result in a greater tragedy," he said.

Conley is facing attempted murder, aggravated assault and gun charges and is being held on $750,000 bail, while Payton is charged with aggravated assault and was released on $100,000 bail. null
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