Uber, a company that created an app which allows people to instantly find a nonprofessional taxi-driver in the area, is under scrutiny. They've had issues in the past regarding their pricing system, but this time, it's much more serious. I read in the news the other day that a former Uber drive has been charged with Sexual Assault – C.R.S. 18-3-402. A former passenger of his has made allegations that he attacked her during the ride. This article brought a couple things to mind: First, how easy it would be for a taxi driver to rape someone. Second, how easy it would be for someone to falsely accuse a taxi driver of rape. Let's take a look at this situation in order to determine how passengers and taxi drivers alike can protect themselves in Denver, Arapahoe, and El Paso County, and across Colorado.
Did the Uber Driver Rape His Passenger?
Ultimately, we don't know whether or not the woman's accusations are true. But, it serves as a good reminder to us all that we need to protect ourselves form harm and false accusations. Read this blog for tips for drivers as well as passengers.
A former Uber driver has been accused of raping his passenger. According to the news article, the alleged victim says she arranged for a ride through her Uber app one evening. The car arrived around 3 am, and she got into the back seat and fell asleep. Reportedly, after exiting the highway, the driver stopped the car and asked the woman to get into the front, because he was having a hard time finding the address. The woman agreed, moved to the front seat and fell asleep (she was intoxicated). She awoke when the driver pulled into an alley behind an apartment building and reportedly grabbed her hand and stuck it in his own pants. Apparently, the woman wasn't alarmed by this, removed her hand, and fell back asleep. When she awoke the third time, she was in the driver's apartment, and the man was allegedly assaulting her. After the assault, he reportedly drove her back to her own home, saying he had “made her happy.” GPS coordinates taken from the woman's phone show that it was at the man's apartment, so this unbelievable story is partly true. The woman was also able to identify photos of the man's apartment, and picked him out of the lineup. All of this is slightly unbelievable; if the woman was as drunk and impaired as she says she was, how does she remember so much? We have come across many situations like this as skilled criminal defense lawyers. The problem is that it is her word against his that the sexual encounter was not consensual. It's difficult when it comes to Sexual Assault cases: Often, there is no argument that two people had sex, the problem lies in whether or not they both agreed. In some cases, the women agree to a sexual encounter, and then regret it and make accusations later. Ultimately, we don't know whether or not the Uber driver raped his passenger, but it provides a good opportunity for us all to learn how to protect ourselves from harm or false accusations. It is never smart to be alone with a stranger.
Drivers Need to Be Careful
Taxi and limousine drivers need to be careful. It's easy to make false accusations, and drivers make easy targets. Because of this, it's important to take steps to protect yourself if you are a driver. My tips would be to be as professional as possible, check in with other people during long drives, and never ask a passenger to sit in the front seat.
Passengers Need to Be Careful
Passengers also need to be careful. As you can see from the story above, it wouldn't be difficult for a driver to take advantage of you. Because of this, it is important to be careful and wary when you employing a driver. Try to carpool with other people instead of going alone. A designated driver continues to make sense.
Accused of Sexual Assault? Why You Need a Lawyer
If you've been accused of Sexual Assault in Jefferson, Douglas, or Adams County, don't hesitate to contact an hard-hitting criminal defense attorney to represent you in court. You need the advocacy of a lawyer who knows how the system works and will gather evidence to tell your side of the story. Don't give in and plead guilty or work with an overwhelmed public defender. Contact an affordable attorney who will fight to protect your future. Here at the O'Malley Law Office, we fight to win.Request a Free Consultation