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Police: Roadway assault may have been racially motivated

November 11, 2021–11:30 a.m.


A Rome man – accused of using his motor vehicle as a weapon – was jailed Wednesday on charges of aggravated assault, aggressive driving, and failure to maintain a lane.

According to the arrest warrants, 43-year old Michael Anthony Battaglia intentionally left his lane of travel and struck the victim’s vehicle, causing the victim’s vehicle to partially leave the roadway.

Battaglia then pulled ahead of the victim’s vehicle and slammed on his brakes with the intent to cause a secondary collision and block the victim’s escape route.

The report states that it is believed the victim’s race was a motivating factor in the assault, which occurred on October 15 on Martha Berry Boulevard at Veteran’s Memorial Highway.