Drivers' behind-the-wheel fistfight causes crash on I-95

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An argument over break time among three people in driver, middle and passenger seats of a rented International box truck erupted into a fist fight wherein the major blows ended up being the truck striking a guard rail and then traveling down an embankment, according to Connecticut State Police. 

The incident occurred on May 12 around 4:30 p.m. on I-95 near Exit 5 in Greenwich, Connecticut, police wrote. 

According to police, it all started with Vilhomme Mondesir, 46 and of Lake Worth, Florida, driving the truck to a stop at a shopping plaza after "driving for several hours." Police continued their version of events

"According to the passengers, Mondesir left the vehicle briefly to purchase food and quickly returned to the vehicle, planning to leave immediately and continue driving. ... The passengers further explained that when they asked Mondesir for some additional time for them to take a break, Mondesir allegedly began yelling that they did not need breaks and immediately began driving, entering I-95 southbound."

It's unclear who employed the three men in a rental truck, or whether they operated under the hours of service and/or electronic logging device rules. Passengers in the truck, police said, "explained that they told Mondesir that denying them breaks could cause Mondesir to lose his job. Mondesir allegedly continued yelling, struck one of the passengers in the face and an altercation began inside of the vehicle, as the second passenger attempted to intervene." 

[Related: FMCSA, police investigate double broker's odd inspections history]

As Mondesir and his co-combatant coworkers made their way south toward New York on a Sunday afternoon, things took a turn for the worse.

"While the altercation was occurring, the vehicle began to swerve from the right lane into the right shoulder before striking a metal beam guardrail and traveling down an embankment," according to police.

Maybe Mondesir was stressed about making a pickup or drop on time. Maybe rates had gotten to him. Whatever the economic conditions, it's probably idea to beat yourself up, or anyone else as the case may be. 

As for the damage report, troopers "observed that the passenger allegedly struck by Mondesir had visible injuries to his face."

The other passenger only reported minor injuries. Worse than a fat lip, Mondesir's face ended up in the papers.

"Based upon the information obtained and observations made during the investigation, Mondesir was taken into State Police custody and transported to Troop G where he was processed and charged."

Assault in the Third Degree, Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree (2 counts), Failure to Maintain Lane.

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But maybe Mondesir's fight to take the rules into his own hands was over before it started thanks in part to a driver facing dashcam.  

"Troopers obtained dash camera footage depicting the interior of the vehicle, which further corroborated allegations that Mondesir had struck the face of the passenger seated beside him and failed to safely operate the vehicle within its established lane, resulting in a collision. The dash camera footage was subsequently processed as evidence in this investigation."

Mondesir was held on $5,000 bail. 

[Related: Can AI transform the prying eyes of in-cab cameras?]

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