Friday, October 19, 2018
Public safety

Deputies: Woman and stepmother assault driver in Pasco road rage incident caught on video

NEW PORT RICHEY — A woman and her stepmother were accused of pulling another woman through her car window and then beating her unconscious in the roadway in an apparent road-rage incident, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

The incident took place about 3:45 p.m. Tuesday when two cars were stopped next to each other in the northbound lane of Little Road at Trouble Creek Road. Pasco deputies said Alicia Nikole Scarduzio, 20, and her stepmother, Shelley Lyn Gemberling, 49, started arguing with the driver of the car next to theirs, which was in the left lane of Little Rock Road.

The two women got out of their car, deputies said, and walked over to the other driver's window. As the driver tried to raise her window, deputies said, Scarduzio and Gemberling reached inside the open window and pulled her out of her car by her hair and throat.

"The victim fell to the ground," an arrest report said, "at which time the defendants punched the victim multiple times about the face and body, causing the victim to lose consciousness."

A witness waiting in traffic pulled out her smartphone and started recording video of Scarduzio pummeling the driver as she appeared to lay motionless on the street.

Seconds later, the video showed a sheriff's cruiser speeding across the grass median toward Scarduzio as she stopped beating the woman. A man also yelled at Scarduzio and pushed her away from the driver.

The driver, who was not identified by deputies, suffered a broken nose and other injuries. She told deputies that they approached her because of a traffic incident, but the report doesn't detail what transpired before the alleged assault.

Scarduzio and Gemberling were not arrested at the scene, however.

"The suspects both said they were victims," Pasco sheriff's spokeswoman Amy Marinec said. So detectives took time to assemble more evidence, which led to their arrests Wednesday night.

One witness told deputies they only saw Scarduzio assault the woman, while another witness said they saw both women beat her — and took a photo of them standing over her.

In her arrest report, Gemberling denied pulling the woman out of the car. Instead, Gemberling said the driver got out and pushed her.

"Alicia Scarduzio denied punching the victim in the face," her arrest report said, "but advised she did strike her with an open hand."

Each faces a charge of burglary with aggravated battery. Each was booked into the Land O'Lakes Detention Center, where they were being held Thursday in lieu of $50,000 bail apiece.

Contact Sara DiNatale at [email protected] Follow @sara_dinatale.

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