A Kings Mills man has been charged with assault after police say he punched a man in the face in a road rage incident.
John R. Hatt, 50, has been charged with one count of misdemeanor assault in the Saturday incident, which took place near S.R. 741 and Kings Mills Road in Mason.
Police say that just after 6 p.m., Nicholas Clark and two friends were driving on S.R. 741 when Clark spat outside the window of his vehicle. A Jeep, later determined to be operated by Hatt, pulled up beside him and attempted to drive them off the roadway, he told police.
When stopped at a red light, Hatt walked up to Clark’s vehicle and spat in his face, according to Clark. Clark exited his vehicle and yelled at Hatt before returning to his vehicle. That’s when he said Hatt approached him and punched him in the face through an open window.
Police said that Hatt didn’t deny punching Clark in the face, but said he was simply trying to pass Clark’s erratically-driven vehicle when Clark spat outside the window and on his face.
He told police he approached the stopped vehicle at a red light and spat in Clark’s face. Clark then exited his vehicle and spat in Hatt’s face again. That’s when Hatt told police he punched Clark in the face, according to the police report.
Hatt faces up to six months in prison and a $1,000 fine if convicted of the charges.