State Watch — Verizon
Oregon mayor faces attempted murder charges after alleged road rage shooting
The mayor of a small town in Oregon has been arrested on multiple charges including attempted murder following a road rage incident on Monday.
The Hood River County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that Dowen Jones, the mayor of Rufus, which is located in the northern part of the state, has been charged with one count of attempted murder and four counts of attempted assault after he opened fire at a family driving by him on a highway.
The release states that a family was traveling on Highway 281 on Monday night behind an SUV that was driving “erratically” before the SUV abruptly pulled over.
The driver of the family’s car slowed down to get a description of the driver’s car to report the erratic driving to the sheriff’s office, but the office says Jones stepped out of his car and fired multiple shots from a handgun at the family’s car.
The gunfire damaged the car, which contained two adults and two children, but no one was injured. Investigators identified the car and Jones as the shooter on Tuesday, and he was arrested.
The release states that the investigation is ongoing.
A spokesperson for the town of Rufus declined The Hill’s request for comment on the arrest.
Jones was elected mayor of the town in 2018 with 76 votes, and his term ends at the end of the year. Four voters wrote someone else in, but he faced no other opposition.
NBC reported that Rufus City Council President Scott Holliday said council members have not yet met to discuss any action that could or should be taken against Jones. He said Jones is well-liked and the described actions are not in character.
—Updated at 4:38 p.m.