The victim of a vicious road rage incident says she is still haunted by what could have driven a man to attack her with a crowbar, breaking her arms.
“In my opinion, if you have that much anger, you shouldn’t be on the road,” says Chelsey, who did not want her last name used in this story.
The 34-year-old was driving down 76 Avenue the morning of March 7 when she approached a vehicle stopped in the eastbound lane, preventing her from turning onto 87 Street.
“I stopped. I waited for probably two seconds. I honked my horn. He didn’t do anything.
“I honked my horn again, yelled “Go” at him. He looked back. He moved out of the way, and I turned.”
Chelsey continued driving home and was parked in front of her house in King Edward Park when she saw the car turn the corner behind her.
“He went by me, just a little bit, stopped, looked back then he backed up in behind me.
“I looked in my driver-side mirror. I saw him get out. He had a weapon in his hands. My thought was he was going to attack my car.
“When I got out of the car, I didn’t even get the driver side door closed – he raised [the crowbar] up, swung down, I blocked with [my left arm]. He was going for my head. I was just strong enough to block it.
Chelsey says her head went blank and she didn’t cry out in pain during the attack. The man walked back to his car and left, and she walked to her house and started yelling for her step-daughter’s help.
She was taken to hospital and underwent a four-hour surgery, ultimately spending one week in hospital.
“He smashed [the left] arm into between 30 and 50 pieces, dislocated it. He broke this [right] wrist and he broke clean through [a bone in my right arm] and dislocated the elbow.”
Chelsey says her friends, family and fiancé have been supportive and she’s especially grateful for strangers who supported her GoFundMe campaign. She receives help from homecare every morning to get dressed and make her lunch, and she has been off work since the attack.
However, on the day she spoke to Global News, Chelsey had hit a milestone.
“I was able to dress myself,” she says.
“Every milestone, everyone takes everything for granted. Being able to scratch my nose when I was told I couldn’t bend past 90 degrees – I was ecstatic.”
Chelsey hopes she’ll get the cast off her left arm in a few weeks then she’ll undergo extensive physiotherapy. She said she is keen for life to get back to normal.
“I want to go back to work. I want to have full mobility of both arms.”
Before the attack, she had been in the process of moving and now lives in a different neighbourhood. But Chelsey said she is not afraid to return to King Edward Park; she also does not fear for her personal safety.
While she sometimes gets angry at the accused, she holds no ill will towards him; Chelsey said she has already forgiven her attacker, adding she holds no resentment towards him.
“I hope he gets the help that he needs. I don’t wish him harm. Yes, he hurt me but that’s just not my belief.
“Life’s too short to be grumpy. I was grumpy for too many years, where I was negative. You heal faster if you’re positive.”
Jared Eliasson, 28, is charged with attempted murder, possession of a dangerous weapon and aggravated assault. He was denied bail last Friday.
Watch below: An Edmonton woman who was the victim of a vicious road rage attack involving a crowbar is sharing her story with Global News. Julia Wong has more.