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Driver arrested in ax-wielding incident

When Fred J. Bowles thought another motorist gestured rudely at him, Bowles figured the other driver wanted to fight, so he pulled out an ax from his pickup and threatened to beat the other driver to death with it, according to a Citrus County Sheriff's Office report. Bowles, 48, of Homosassa was arrested at 3:56 p.m. Friday on charges of aggravated assault with intent to commit a felony, according to the report. An officer said he saw two people arguing in the parking lot of a Circle K gas station on U.S. 19 at the corner of Cardinal Street. When the officer pulled up, Bowles drove off in his white Chevy truck. The other man, whose name was unavailable Saturday morning, said Bowles threatened to kill him with an ax. The officer followed the truck, and Bowles pulled over. Bowles told the officer that the driver had made a rude gesture. He told the officer he thought the other driver wanted to fight, so he grabbed his ax. Bowles again lifted the ax while he told the story to the officer. When the officer drew out a Taser gun, Bowles lowered the ax. The other driver told police that he and his girlfriend were stopped at a traffic light at the intersection of S Suncoast Boulevard and Ozello Trail when Bowles began honking his horn, pulled up to their car, gestured rudely and yelled obscenities. Bowles drove on, but when he saw their car again, he began screaming and cursing at them, police said. The other driver and his girlfriend pulled into a Circle K, and Bowles pulled up to them, wielding an ax and threatening the man, according to the report. Bowles was taken to the Citrus County jail. His bail was set at $3,000. The ax was turned over as evidence.

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