In less than a month, three Cleveland-area rideshare drivers have been carjacked and attacked. Police are looking for the attackers, in hopes of preventing more incidents.
In the most recent incident, a female Lyft driver was violently beaten and carjacked after picking up three men in Garfield Heights. She drove the men to their destination, which was about five minutes away. Once she stopped the vehicle, one of the men started punching her in the head and telling her to get out of the car.
After she was hit in the head, another one of the attackers dragged her to the ground. The three men got back in her dark blue Toyota Camry and took off. The men were described as being 18 to 22 years old and thin. In addition to taking her car, the men also stole her cell phone and wallet. The woman wandered around the area until she found Marymount Hospital on McCracken Road and checked herself in.
Two weeks prior to that situation, another Lyft driver in Garfield Heights found herself in a similar situation. She picked up four young men, who attacked her and stole her car, cellphone, and wallet. Less than a week before that, another rideshare driver was carjacked by a pair of young men in their 20s at an apartment complex in Cleveland’s Nottingham neighborhood. When she pulled out her gun, the assailants ran away. Lyft, however, fired her after the incident because of the company’s “no weapons” policy.
19 News reached out to Lyft regarding the carjackings. According to the company, it is working with police to keep drivers safe, as well as looking into ways to expand its safety features to prevent those types of attacks. Once the company learned about the incidents, it immediately banned the passengers’ accounts. While police have not said if the attacks are connected, there are similarities between the crimes.
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