Road-Rage Guy Gets 27 to 50 Years

Martin Zale, 69, settled dispute with 9mm handgun
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2015 3:02 PM CDT
Updated Jun 13, 2015 3:29 PM CDT
Martin Zale listens during sentencing June 12, 2015 in Howell, Mich. Zale was sentenced Friday to 25 to 50 years in prison for the fatal shooting of another motorist during a road rage incident.   (Alan Ward/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus via AP)
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(Newser) – A Michigan man who shot another driver in the face during a road-rage confrontation got 27 to 50 years in prison yesterday—and won't be eligible for parole until he's 96, USA Today reports. Martin Zale, 69, shot and killed 43-year-old Derek Flemming, a father of two, when they faced off over Zale's aggressive driving on Sept. 2 in Genoa Township, Michigan. Zale claimed self-defense during the trial, saying Flemming approached his truck, punched him in the face, threatened him, and reached in the truck's cab. But Zale was found guilty of second-degree murder and firearms charges. "You went about your day almost looking for conflict, not trying to avoid it," the judge said, per the Livingston Daily. "If it hadn't been Mr. Flemming, it would have been someone else." Both men had been involved in previous road-rage incidents.

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