On October 8th, Bobby Gale, a Stockton, CA, construction worker, just off work, watched a truck speed through his construction zone. Gale waved his arms and shouted, stopping the vehicle. The driver, identified as Michael Hayes, got out of his truck and shouted racial slurs. Then, he pulled a gun and shot Gale seven times.
Gale’s brother, Marlon Gale, told a Stockton news station, “The guy doesn’t know my brother. My brother doesn’t know him. Then, out of nowhere, he started calling him the N-word and started shooting.”
The court charged Hayes with attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon last week. Prosecutors continue to debate whether to charge Hayes’s actions as a hate crime.
Bobby Gale survived the shooting. The gunshots missed major arteries, but he suffers bullet wounds in his throat, upper arm, shoulder, and face. Marlon, Gale’s brother, says they “don’t know if he’ll be able to work at the same capacity.” He added, “The doctors are letting us know. Our first thing … is being able to see that he is breathing right. He’s talking right.”
Police briefly pursued Hayes; they offered a $10,000 reward for information. An anonymous tip pointed the police toward the fugitive. They arrested Michael Hayes with no complications.
Construction work remains the deadliest profession in the United States. Speeders in work zones persist as a significant concern. Gale asked Michael Hayes to slow down, not foreseeing any danger.