When the driver being pursued in a road-rage incident on the evening of Saturday, Dec. 26, arrived at a red light at Ravenswood Avenue and Middlefield Road, from the direction of Palo Alto, the driver's general directions from one of his three passengers had been to turn left and head for the main station of the Menlo Park Police Department.
But when the driver of the pursuing vehicle, who also stopped for the light, emerged from his vehicle and approached the lead car from behind while yelling profanities, the driver of the lead car -- who did not know the area -- went straight ahead, said Sgt. Alfredo Guarducci of the Atherton Police Department.
A few minutes later, at about 8:35 p.m., they turned east on Oak Grove Avenue, still being pursued, and turned into the first driveway they found, at 230 Oak Grove Ave., Guarducci said. The pursuing vehicle stopped close behind and two men got out, police said. There were at least three people in the pursuing vehicle, Guarducci added.
One of the men pointed a gun at occupants of the the parked vehicle -- two men and two women, all in their early 20s and all from out of town. The man demanded their money, the car keys and cellphones, all of which were handed over "from what I understand," Guarducci said. There were no injuries, he said.
The two men, described by police as Hispanic, then returned to their vehicle -- a metallic blue older-model Subaru -- and left the scene "in an unknown direction," police said. They are still at large.
The incident began in Palo Alto over a situation in which the driver of what became the lead vehicle reconsidered a decision to make a turn and instead merged back into traffic.
The driver of the vehicle behind him became angry and chased the car into Menlo Park and Atherton, flashing his headlights and yelling and screaming, Guarducci said.