Just last month, we wrote about a Lyft driver who was charged with assaulting passengers on a ride to the beach in Panama City, Florida. This month, an Uber driver has been accused of sexually assaulting a passenger in Maryland.
Uber Passenger Reports Sexual Assault
On July 2, a 19-year-old woman called for an Uber at around 5 a.m. in Manassas, Maryland. During the ride and before reaching her destination, the woman claimed the driver exposed himself and sexually assaulted the passenger. She got out of the car and escaped the attack. She later called the police to report the crime.
Police identified the driver as 27-year-old Aaron Ginn. Warrants were issued for his arrest on charges of sexual assault and indecent exposure.
Uber did not say how long Ginn was working as a driver but they reported he passed the criminal background check and did not have previous reports. According to an Uber, the company wants to expand sexual assault and misconduct education. However, educating drivers on sexual assault is not likely to stop it from occurring.
Rape Victim Suing Uber
In 2018, a woman in Weymouth, Massachusetts said she was raped by an Uber driver. According to the lawsuit, she requested a ride from Quincy to Weymouth. Uber driver Frederick Q. Amfo picked her up, drove her to a poorly lit area, locked the doors, and raped her in the vehicle. Immediately after she was dropped off, a friend took her to the hospital.
Amfo was arrested on charges of rape. Following the arraignment, he posted $10,000 in bail and was told to turn over his passport within 24 hours. Instead, Amfo got on a plane to his native Ghana and has not returned. The judge says a mistake allowed the suspect to escape.
Now, the victim is holding Uber accountable for failing to protect her from the Uber driver. The victim filed a lawsuit against Uber on six counts, including negligence, negligent hiring, battery, assault, false imprisonment, and infliction of emotional distress.
Uber's History of Sexual Assaults
In 2019, Uber issued a US Safety Report, which included incidents of sexual assault and sexual misconduct. According to the report, the company received 5,981 allegations of serious sexual assault between 2017 and 2018, including 464 counts of rape. However, Uber's definition of serious sexual assaults did not include other sexual misconduct, including indecent exposure, masturbation, or inappropriate sexual comments.
There are some problems with the way Uber approves drivers that could be putting riders in danger of injury accidents, assault, or sexual assault. This includes background checks that do not always identify violent criminals and sex offenders. Despite Uber's claims, a number of drivers have been approved over the years despite a criminal history that should disqualify them as drivers.
This is one reason by some cities, like New York, are making rideshare drivers go through a second background check. New York City Uber and Lyft drivers have to go through a screening by the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). The TLC screening is more rigorous than Uber's, and requires a fingerprint-based background check, drug test, defensive driving course, driver education course, and exam.
After an Assault by an Uber Driver
If you or a loved one has been assaulted or injured after an Uber ride in the greater Denver metropolitan area, please do not hesitate to contact accidentdenver.com today at 303-642-8888 for a free consultation. We are here waiting for you.