Mikaela Barboza was headed down 441 on her way to a meeting when she cut another driver off. That, Barboza said, is was what spurred the driver and her sister to follow the 26-year-old to a parking lot and beat her with baseball bats.
The attack — caught on camera by Barboza and a bystander — left her with a broken nose, seven staples in the back of her head and seven stitches in the front.
“My nose is the worst of it,” she said Sunday, days after the Thursday afternoon beating. “I can’t even breathe out of it.”
When she cut the driver off on the road, Barboza said the woman started yelling at her, along with another driver who said “you cut off my sister. That’s disrespectful.”
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Miami Herald
Worried for her safety, Barboza pulled into a nearby parking lot, but the women followed. She said they blocked her in — one car behind her and one car in front. Barboza, of Plantation, called the police, then stepped out of her car holding her cell phone to record video.
“I don’t got time for this. I got a kid, bruh,” Barboza said as the camera swings up to reveal a woman in a floral dress opening her trunk.
“I got a kid too,” the woman said, now advancing toward Barboza with a wooden baseball bat in hand. A small boy can be seen in the front seat of the woman’s car, watching the scene. “I don’t give a f---.”
The angry woman starts cursing at Barboza, threatening to “f--- her a-- up.” Out of the corner of the camera view, another woman is visible walking toward the pair, holding something in her hand.
“I’m not scared,” Barboza said. At that moment, the camera goes flying. It’s the moment the second woman, in a red sweatshirt, hit her in the head with a metal bat, she said.
Bystander video taken by an acquaintance of Barboza’s picks up where the first one leaves off. It shows the two women struggling on the ground as other witnesses rush to break up the fight.
“We were kind of wrestling and the other sister with the other bat came over and started beating me over the head,” Barboza said.
At some point, Barboza said she thinks someone sprayed mace on the women. The hospital staffers kept coughing when they smelled the residue in her hair while stitching her up.
During the fight, the woman in the red sweatshirt can be heard shouting “don’t talk about black people,” but Barboza denied she said anything racist to the woman and pointed to the first video, which she said contains her entire conversation with the women before the attack started.
In hindsight, Barboza said, she wishes she would have stayed in the car until police arrived.
“If I knew she’d have a bat I would’ve hauled butt, but it was too late,” she said.
Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies arrived after the women with baseball bats left, but Barboza said she filed a police report while she was in the hospital getting her wounds treated. BSO did not respond to immediate request for comment.
“I’m pressing charges of course,” she said. “I want justice to be served. I want them off the street and in jail.”