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Opening statements begin in retrial of man accused of deadly Westminster road rage shooting

A 13-year-old boy died in the shooting and three others were injured
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Posted at 11:30 AM, Apr 12, 2023

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. — Opening statements began Wednesday morning in the retrial of Jeremy Webster, a man accused of a 2018 deadly road rage shooting in Westminster.

On June 14, 2018 around 3:05 p.m., Jeremy John Webster, 23 at the time, claimed he became angry on the road because mother Meghan Bigelow had cut him off while trying to merge out of the way of an emergency vehicle. Meghan Bigelow was driving with her sons, Vaughn Bigelow Jr., 13, her 12-year-old and her 8-year-old.

Both Meghan Bigelow and her 12-year-old son confirmed that they had to move in front of Webster to allow the emergency vehicle to pass them, adding that Webster started cursing at them afterward.

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After the emergency vehicle passed, Meghan Bigelow moved back into her own lane and tried to speed up to get in front of Webster. According to her statement, he also sped up but she was eventually able to get in front of him.

Westminster Det. Bernard Vonfeldt said Webster then followed the Bigelows into the parking lot of a dentist’s office near Sheridan Boulevard and W. 80th Avenue. The drivers exchanged words and Meghan Bigelow recorded a video of Webster’s car — including his license plate — on her cell phone.

She then got out of her car with her children. According to the statement, Webster reversed his car, got out and started fighting with her again before opening fire.

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According to a search warrant, she fell, and Webster then turned to two of her sons — 13 and 8 years old — and shot them both multiple times. He started to walk back toward his car, then turned around and shot one of the boys again as he was on the ground, the document reads. The 12-year-old son was able to run away from the scene without being shot, according to the warrant.

Webster then allegedly turned toward another man who was in his truck nearby with his 9-year-old daughter and shot the man as well.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found the four people with gunshot wounds. The uninjured Bigelow son told police his mother had a photo of the suspect car's license plate.

The 13-year-old Bigelow son, Vaughn, died of his injuries. Meghan Bigelow and her 8-year-old son were taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.

A search warrant obtained by Denver7 showed that Webster confessed to the shooting and claimed to have mental health issues.

In a preliminary hearing in October 2018, Westminster Officer Charles Rush recalled rendering aid to Meghan Bigelow, then helping her 8-year-old son until EMTs arrived. Rush said their injuries were so severe, he was sure they had already died.

Witnesses told police that the shooter fled in a black Toyota Corolla.

Det. Vonfeldt said in the 2018 prelim that after the shooting, Webster had stopped by a Home Depot to pick up tools before returning to a house he was helping to remodel in Westminster.

Around two and a half hours after the shooting, as Webster was driving home to Colorado Springs, authorities spotted his car on Interstate 25, but lost sight of it. About 10 minutes later, they found it again, north of Meadows Parkway in Castle Rock, and pulled the driver over.

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Webster was then taken into custody.

He was charged with multiple counts, including one count of first-degree murder, three counts of attempted first-degree murder after deliberation, two counts of attempted first-degree murder — extreme indifference, and five counts of first-degree assault. He also faces nine sentence enhancers if he is convicted for committing a violent crime causing death or serious bodily injury and for committing a violent crime using a weapon.

Court rules there's enough evidence in Westminster road rage shooting case to go to trial

During the preliminary hearing, the defense counsel for Webster asked about their client’s interrogation and whether he said he had mental health issues. Det. Vonfeldt testified that Webster said he was seeing a psychiatrist and had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. He was prescribed medications for that as well as antidepressants.

In January 2019, an Adams County judge entered a not guilty plea on behalf of Webster.

One year after the shooting, in June 2019, the Bigelow family decided to use much of the fundraising from a GoFundMe to establish a scholarship through their Big Waves foundation to honor their son. Big Waves advocates for gun sensibility and safety, according to its website.

The scholarship is open for graduating Colorado high school seniors who play water polo, which was Vaughn's favorite sport.

One year after Westminster road rage shooting, family giving back with scholarship in boy's name

Ryan Bannon, a friend of Vaughn, was the first recipient of the Vaughn Bigelow, Jr. Memorial Scholarship.

Webster's first trial began on July 7, 2021. The judge declared a mistrial after a “necessary and indispensable witness for the prosecution” was unable to travel to Colorado from out of state for deliberations.

His second trial began in early April and opening statements started Wednesday.


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