Photo: Tim Petruk
This Brocklehurst intersection, at the corner of Desmond Street and Tranquille Road, was the scene of an altercation on June 28 involving two drivers. Video of a subsequent confrontation has gone viral on social media.
A Kamloops man who faced backlash online earlier this summer after video of a road rage altercation in Brocklehurst went viral says he’s not sorry for throwing a cup of coffee at a young woman and then threatening to hit her.
In fact, Taylor Culver argues his actions were justified — and he’s said he’d do it again if faced with the same circumstances.
“That bitch got what happened to her that day,” the 28-year-old told Castanet Kamloops.
“And she would have had more if she had wanted to act like an idiot.”
Culver, a former Canadian Forces soldier from Brampton, Ont., contacted Castanet Kamloops this week to tell his side of the story.
The small business owner was pictured in video recorded June 28 near the intersection of Tranquille Road and Desmond Street. The video, shot by the young woman he was facing, shows Culver approaching his vehicle and angrily threatening to hit her.
What the video doesn’t show is what led to the altercation.
Pippa Epp, the 24-year-old woman who shot the video and posted it on social media, told Castanet last month that she wasn’t sure what precipitated the confrontation. She said she was stopped at a red light on Tranquille Road when an angry man started yelling at her from another vehicle.
This man was Culver. He blamed Epp’s driving and said she was speeding and weaving through traffic – so much so that he feared for the safety of his wife and young child, who were in the vehicle with him. He estimated Epp’s speed at 80 km/h to 90 km/h.
Culver said he pulled up next to her at a red light on Desmond Street and told her to slow down. He said he told her she was going to kill someone.
“She says, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry,'” he said.
“So I said, ‘Please stop driving like that.’ She goes, ‘Oh, you’re having a good day. You’re having a good day.'”
Culver said he felt the woman’s response was sarcastic, so he decided to escalate.
“I said, ‘Okay, bitch,’ and grabbed this cup of coffee and threw that son of a bitch out the window,” he said.
“He knocked on his door and fell to his knees. There was no coffee. I was more impressed that I could shovel it like that — like it was a short save to a third base-type deal. It hit her, and she said, “Oh, oh, that’s the first time anybody said anything to me.” And then she looked at me wide-eyed and I said, ‘You’re having a shitty good day, now shit.'”
But that wasn’t where it ended. Culver said he then “peeled” and cut off Epp’s vehicle at the intersection, rushing with the intention of driving straight home.
Showdown on the side of the road
Epp said she followed in hopes of writing down the license plate number of the man who threw the coffee cup. Culver said he took her after him as an act of aggression.
The two drivers pulled to the side of the road and Culver got out of his vehicle. He approached Epp’s car and she recorded on her cellphone’s video camera.
“Where I’m from, you don’t stop behind someone unless you want to,” Culver said.
“I was ready to take her head off her shoulders and then when she pulled out her phone it was a clear indication that now this is all a big joke – it’s a big game because she wants out the phone and hide behind it and talk bullshit, act a certain way.
Culver maintained that the woman’s sarcasm was what led to the confrontation.
“When she turned around and looked at me and gave me that answer, it showed me that she had no respect for human life and safety,” he said.
“That’s when that bitch deserved to have an empty coffee cup thrown at her, because I can tell you she never learned a shitty lesson like that.”
“This is the exhibition”
Contacted by Castanet on Wednesday, Epp said she had nothing to add to her story. She said she was fine and moving on with her life.
Culver said he was also doing well, despite an online harassment campaign targeting his business – The 3 Fly Fishing Co. – in the days and weeks after Epp’s viral post.
“My business is going well,” he said.
“People who are affiliated with fly fishing have the same kind of mentality – they understand, they know I’m a cold person and it’s a tight-knit community. They actually know me.
According to Culver, not a single customer has asked for a refund or given him a hard time following the incident.
“If anything, more people have reached out because, I mean, it’s the exposure,” he said.
“They’re like, ‘Hey, other than all those bull-t, do you sell fly rods? Do you do commercial flies? I still generate income. …if anything, he grew up.
“The investigation is still open”
Epp called 911 from the side of the road immediately after the altercation. She said she wanted charges laid.
Police confirmed they were investigating the incident in the days that followed, but Culver said he was not contacted by the RCMP.
“No RCMP contacted me, although they said they were trying to reach me, they did not contact me or my wife,” he said.
“Isn’t that something?”
RCMP Corporal. Crystal Evelyn said attempts had been made to contact the man in the video, but investigators had so far been unsuccessful.
“The investigation is still open,” she said.
“The agent attempted to contact the registered owner.”
Evelyn said the Mounties were hoping Culver would contact them.
Culver said he would do the same tomorrow if faced with a similar situation.
“I started evaluating everything in my head and said, ‘If I don’t tell this person right now, I’m going to see a kid get smoked,'” he said.
“Someone is going to cross the street, old people riding bicycles on the side of the road. I said, ‘If I don’t say anything, somebody’s going to die.’ I felt this inner call.
Culver suggested it could have been triggered because of a car accident he was involved in years ago while still living in Ontario. He said he suffered serious injuries and is still feeling the effects of the accident today.
He also defended his decision to throw away the coffee cup and threaten to attack Epp, saying he would have hit her if it had landed in his face.
“I was ready to kick her ass for thinking she was going to come out and do some bullshit — I was ready for anything,” Culver said.
“Being female doesn’t just give you the right to fu–ing, does it?” I open the door to my wife because she’s a queen and she behaves like one, so that’s how she deserves to be treated.
“A woman can take a glass of water and throw it in your face and say, ‘You asshole’ – and not everyone talks bullshit because that’s just the type of behavior accepted by society. But if I throw away an empty cup? “Oh, there’s no reason to do that. Fuck you.”