David B. Goldberg of Potomac was found guilty Wednesday on nine charges stemming from what prosecutors called an extreme case of road rage at Westfield Montgomery mall in Bethesda in November.
“People are entitled to feel safe driving in a shopping mall parking lot,” Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy said in a news release after a Circuit Court jury delivered its verdict after deliberating since Monday night.
“Mr. Goldberg escalated what might have otherwise been a minor traffic dispute to a violent resolution,” McCarthy said. “If you try to run over someone or stab them because of your temper or road rage you will be prosecuted.”
The jury cleared Goldberg, 25, of the most serious charges — two counts of attempted first-degree murder — but convicted him of two counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter. He faces up to 165 years in prison, prosecutors said. Sentencing by Judge Cheryl McCally is set for Dec. 18.
On Nov. 14, Goldberg was driving on an access road near the mall parking lot and cut off Clifton Botts and Rachel Peterson, both of Potomac, who honked their horn at him, according to a police report. They had words and Botts and Peterson then parked near the Sears store at the mall and got out of their car. An older woman and young child also were in their car. Goldberg’s young daughter was in his car.
“David Goldberg drove back towards Botts and Peterson, revved his engine, and then raced towards them while they were out of their vehicle standing in the middle of the parking lot,” the police report stated. “In the process of racing towards Botts and Peterson, David Goldberg either lost control of his car or swerved out of the way and struck a parked vehicle. ... Botts and Peterson were able to get out of the way so they did not get hit.”
Goldberg then got out of his car, started fighting with Botts and stabbed him, police said. In trying to stop the fight, Peterson also was stabbed by Goldberg; she was hospitalized for several days following the attack.
Regarding Botts, Goldberg was found guilty of attempted voluntary manslaughter, three counts of first-degree assault and one of second-degree assault. For his attacks on Peterson, he was found guilty of attempted voluntary manslaughter, two counts of first-degree assault and one of second-degree assault.