LAUDERDALE LAKES, FLA. (WSVN) - A South Florida driver is hoping clear cellphone video will help police capture the women who chased her to a shopping plaza in Lauderdale Lakes and beat her with a bat.
Her face still bruised and her broken nose in bandages, 26-year-old Mikaela Barboza said the road rage attack went down on Thursday, when she accidentally cut off a woman while driving down U.S. 441.
The victim said that woman’s sister, who was driving a different car, saw what happened and began yelling at her.
“‘You don’t cut my sister off, that’s disrespectful,'” Barboza said, as she recreated the chain of events that led to the brutal attack.
Barboza said the sister of the woman she cut off continued to chase her while yelling derogatory remarks.
Fearing for her safety, the victim pulled into a strip mall off Oakland Park Boulevard to try and get away.
But Barboza said the woman she had cut off and her sister managed to find her.
“Her sister actually blocked me in, and the other sister blocked me from behind,” she said. “I had nowhere to go.”
Barboza then got out of her car and began recording the encounter on her cellphone.
“I just put my phone on record and got out, and that’s when it all started,” she said.
The footage captured one of the women walking toward Barboza while carrying a baseball bat in her right hand.
“I don’t give a [expletive]. I will [expletive] your [expletive] up,” one of the women could be heard saying on cellphone video.
She then yelled racial slurs and began bashing Barboza in the head.
“I thought this was it for me. I mean, I was just fighting for my life. After I got hit the first [time], I just grabbed her, and we started wrestling on the floor, so I got the bat away from her,” said Barboza.
It was then that, the victim said, the other woman became involved.
“While I’m wrestling with her, the other sister with the wooden bat just started hitting me in the back of the head,” said Barboza.
At this point, good Samaritans intervened. Cellphone video captured a man yanking the bat away from one of the women.
Barboza was rushed to the hospital with a bloody wound to the head and a broken nose.
“Five stitches on the top and two inside,” said Barboza as she showed 7News her head injuries. “I got seven staples in the back of my head from where the other sister was hitting me in the back.”
She is now counting her blessings while hoping authorities are able to track down her attackers.
“I’m just happy to be here; I’m happy to be alive and not brain dead or anything like that,” she said, “’cause I know it could have been a lot worse.”
Barboza is also thankful that someone decided to step in. “I just wanna say thank you so much for anyone who helped me that day,” she said.
Barboza has a young daughter and said she couldn’t believe that these two women could do this in front of a child, which could be seen watching in a car.
“I don’t see how somebody could have so much rage from just being cut off,” Barboza said. “I want to see justice. I want to see them at least go to jail and pay for what they did ’cause right now I’m suffering, but I hoping they’re gonna suffer too in the end because this is wrong. They could have killed me.”
The victim said she now has to see a specialist due to severely damaged cartilage in her nose.
7News reached out to the Broward Sheriff’s Office for comment, but all they said is that they are investigating the incident.
If you have any information on the sisters’ whereabouts, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.
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