VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — Bre Bre Smith was driving last week with her 3-month-old son when she came to a stoplight on the I-205 exit ramp near SE Mill Plain Boulevard.
That’s when a man leapt out of a car and bashed in her driver’s side window, sending glass flying into her hair and face.
“He came from the right lane to the left lane right behind me, got out with a mallet, bashed my driver window in,” Smith told KOIN 6 News. “Glass was everywhere, all over my face.”
She said she first noticed signs of trouble on SR-14 when a silver car sped up behind her.
“I had moved off to the left side, let them get in front of me and he tried to brake check me and at this point, he got even more angered,” she said.
Smith then got on I-205 and exited onto SE Mill Plain as the car still followed her. She said the attack happened when she stopped for a red light.
“I couldn’t get out to defend myself because I had my infant with me,” she said.
After he broke the glass she said the man also reached into the car and hit her.
“He had struck me with his right hand on my left cheek. It’s still kind of sore.”
While her face was cut and bruised, she felt lucky the shattered glass didn’t injure her 3-month-old son.
“There was some that was in his car seat. The glass went everywhere.”
As the man jumped back in his car and began to drive away, she said a woman in the same vehicle screamed racial slurs at her.
“The woman had rolled down her window and slurred the N-word at me,” she said.
She called 911, reported the incident and provided a license plate number of the attacker’s car. She hopes prosecutors consider the role racism may have played in this attack if the person responsible is arrested and charged.
“I feel that because I am a Black woman, they saw an easy target to say the N-word, to bash my window in, to put me and my son in danger,” Smith said.
Investigators have the information she provided. A spokesperson for the Washington State Patrol told KOIN 6 News the incident is under investigation.