Enraged Driver Kills Man After Following Couple Home

An Arizona man, aged 35, has been sentenced to a 25-year prison term for a fatal road rage incident that occurred in 2020. Frank Martin Lawrence III was convicted for the murder of James William Ackerman Jr. and for assaulting Ackerman’s girlfriend, Carlyn Bui. The Maricopa County court handed down the sentence last month.

The incident unfolded on the night of January 11, 2020, when Bui, with Ackerman as her passenger, was driving home. Lawrence, in a white Dodge pickup truck, swerved into Bui’s lane, prompting her to honk her horn. This action seemingly infuriated Lawrence.

Lawrence then pursued Bui and Ackerman to their shared apartment on Alma School Road, approximately 20 miles southeast of Phoenix. Upon reaching their residence, Lawrence began to perform donuts in the parking lot before exiting his vehicle and assaulting Bui.

After the assault, Lawrence attempted to leave the scene. Ackerman, in an effort to gather evidence, tried to capture Lawrence’s license plate number. However, Lawrence made a U-turn, drove back towards the couple, and intentionally hit Ackerman with his truck, resulting in his death.

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell expressed her concern over the increasing number of violent road rage incidents in the state. She emphasized that such behavior is unacceptable and often results in the loss of innocent lives. Mitchell’s statement came after the sentencing hearing, where she underscored that road rage is a frequent criminal offense in Arizona.

The prosecutor’s office also pointed out a 2023 Forbes Advisor survey, which found that Arizona had the highest number of confrontational driver incidents in the country. The Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety reported 622 suspected road rage incidents in the state in 2022 alone.