Lyft driver sexually assaulted passenger after she refused $1K offer: cops


By Joshua Rhett Miller

May 3, 2018 | 11:52am

Raheel Bin HanifOakland County Sheriffs Office

A Lyft driver in Michigan sexually assaulted a female passenger after offering her $1,000 for sex, authorities said.

Raheel Bin Hanif, 24, of Waterford Township, told the woman during a ride in Pontiac on April 24 that he owned a health spa and would pay her $400 if she let him massage her and complete a subsequent survey on his services, according to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office.

Hanif also encouraged the woman — who had previously used Hanif as a driver on the ridesharing platform — to drink from an open container of Four Loko during the ride. Hanif then arrived at the purported spa, where the victim said she felt as if she was “buzzed” after drinking the alcoholic malt beverage. After the massage ended, Hanif then offered her $1,000 in exchange for sex, which the woman refused before being sexually assaulted. Hanif then drove her back to her home, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said.

“We will never tolerate behavior from those who commit sexual violence,” Bouchard said in a statement. “This is a reminder to review some of the newest safety features included in apps such as Uber and Lyft, which allow you to send your location to friends and family and call for emergency help quickly.”

Hanif was arrested a day after the alleged assault and was later arraigned on three counts of third-degree criminal sexual contact. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison.

Hanif, who remains jailed on $750,000 cash surety bond, is due back in court on Monday.

Investigators are now looking into whether Hanif has been involved in other assaults. He was listed as a possible suspect in another sexual assault in December, but there wasn’t enough evidence to obtain a warrant at the time, Bouchard said.

Anyone with information about Hanif is asked to contact authorities at (248) 858-4911.

Hanif’s arrest comes after a CNN report last month found that at least 103 Uber drivers and 18 Lyft drivers have been accused of sexually assaulting or abusing passengers in the last four years.

“You are pretty much hitchhiking with strangers,” one woman from Miami told CNN. “How many people is it going to take to get assaulted before something is done?”

Hanif was “immediately deactivated” after Lyft officials learned of the alleged assault, which occurred off the company’s platform, spokeswoman Kate Margolis told The Post in a statement Thursday. The incident is now being investigated internally and the company will work with investigators, she said.

“These allegations are deeply disturbing, and are completely unacceptable,” Margolis said. “From day one, the safety of the Lyft community has been our number one priority.”

Everett Lyft driver arrested for sexual assault

Allison Sundell , KING 7:02 PM. PDT March 30, 2017

An Everett Lyft driver was arrested Monday for sexually assaulting a developmentally disabled woman.

The 40-year-old male driver has been released on a $150,000 bond.

The 22-year-old woman is diagnosed with autism, anxiety, low IQ, and has the mental age of a 13-year-old, according to court documents. She uses Lyft to get from her job to a daycare.

The driver first started driving the woman regularly in December 2016.

He began calling the woman on her cell phone to see how she was doing, according to documents. On March 20, the driver called the woman to ask her to dinner at Applebee’s.

After dinner, the driver took the woman to a park in Woodinville where he choked and sexually assaulted her. The woman told police she kicked the driver, and he threatened to hurt her if she told anyone what happened.

Lyft said the driver has been banned from using the service.

"We are devastated by this news," Alexandra LaManna, a Lyft spokesperson, wrote in an email. "We have been in touch with the passenger’s mother and have been supporting the authorities in their investigation."

The driver was arrested for rape in the second degree and assault in the second degree.

Lyft driver charged with raping passenger

by: Ross Cavitt Updated: Jan 26, 2017 - 11:28 PM

COBB COUNTY, Ga. - A Cobb County woman said a Lyft driver sexually assaulted her on a ride home after a night out.

A police report says a Smyrna woman used the Lyft service to ride home from an Atlanta bar to her Vinings area apartment.

"It's a concern, especially for women," one Cobb County woman, who only identified herself as Audrey, said.

Audrey said she has never taken a ride service, mostly because she has her own car, but also because you don't know who is taking you for that ride.

"I'm not sure if the companies actually do a full background check to do a full history there," Audrey told Channel 2’s Ross Cavitt.

But for one woman’s ride, it took a disturbing turn.

A police report said instead of dropping the victim off at her apartment the driver instead stopped at a parking lot here and had sex with her. The report said the victim was in no condition to consent.

Cobb County police tracked down the driver, Jerome Antonio Booze, of Decatur, charging him with felony rape.

Lyft's website said they do full background checks on drivers, eliminating anyone with a felony, violent or sex crimes.

A Lyft representative sent Cavitt a statement saying; 

“We are devastated by this news. The individual in question has been banned from using the Lyft app. We have been assisting law enforcement and are available to continue supporting the authorities in their investigation.”

It is unclear how long Booze had been using his Nissan Versa to drive for Lyft.

Cobb County police told Cavitt an incident like this was a rare occasion.

Booze is being held without bond in the Cobb County Jail.

Lyft sued by Westwood woman over allegations of driver sexual assault



Lyft Inc. was sued Thursday by a woman who alleges one of the transportation company’s drivers picked her up from her workplace in the Mid-Wilshire district in 2015 and drove her to Baldwin Park, where he sexually assaulted her.

The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit alleges assault, battery, false imprisonment, negligent hiring and retention and both intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. The plaintiff is seeking unspecified damages.

A Lyft representative did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

According to her court papers, the woman works as a “Chinese professor.” She says she ordered a ride from Lyft on Jan. 28, 2015, and her intended destination was her home in Westwood.

But after she got into the vehicle, the Lyft driver locked the passenger doors internally, secured the windows and “told plaintiff that he intended to have sex with her,” according to the complaint.

“Plaintiff begged for her life and demanded defendant take her home, which was the opposite direction on the 10 (Santa Monica) Freeway,” the suit states.

The woman was driven to an isolated field in Baldwin Park near the San Bernardino (10) Freeway, where the driver “sexually assaulted and battered plaintiff,” the suit alleges.

After the attack, the driver drove the woman “to a public location where she ran for her life and summoned police,” the suit states.

The suit alleges Lyft negligently hired, supervised and maintained the driver, who is identified in the complaint only as “Marvin Doe.”

–City News Service

Lyft driver arrested, accused of raping customer in Orlando

Updated: Sep 29, 2016 - 6:56 PM

ORLANDO, Fla. - A Lyft driver was arrested Wednesday night on rape charges, according to Orlando police.

Police said Peter Solomon, 49, raped a woman whom he picked up during his shift in early July.

According to a police report, the victim used the Lyft app from Knight’s Pub on North Alafaya Trail at about 11 p.m. July 1.

The driver picked up the victim in a Dodge Grand Caravan, police said.

Solomon was supposed to drive to her home in Winter Park, but instead, he pulled into the driveway of a rundown single-story home and ordered her inside the house, the report said.

"She knew where she started. She knew where she wanted to go, and he took a different path," said Sgt. Tammi Edwards of the Orlando Police Department.

The victim said there were two other men in the house. She was taken into a room and left alone, and police said she took the opportunity to try to flee out a side door of the home.

But Solomon caught her and chased her down, physically forcing her back into the home and into the bedroom, the report said.

Police said Solomon threatened the victim with violence if she resisted, then raped her.

The report also said the victim called 911 from her cellphone at 12:24 a.m. and held the phone at her side so as not to alert Solomon.

A 911 ping from the phone was in the area of Forsyth Road and Muskogee Street, police said.

Orange County sheriff’s deputies responded to the area, but were unable to locate the victim.

The victim told officers that Solomon made her get back into the car and drove her around for about five minutes. The victim made another discreet 911 call.

"She was talking out loud like she was having a normal conversation with the driver, and she was able to give landmarks," said Edwards. before telling her to get out of the car.

The victim got out of the vehicle at an AutoZone across from a Home Depot on East Colonial Drive and Semoran Boulevard.

The report said that the victim called her mother, who picked her up and took her home.

When the victim spoke with police, she said she could identify her attacker and wanted to press charges.

"She has been a very strong victim from the beginning, up until now," said Edwards.

The victim was taken to the Sexual Assault Treatment Center, along with the clothing that she wore on the night of the attack.

Solomon also faces charges of kidnapping and false imprisonment, police said.

Authorities said there may be more victims.

Solomon will appear before a judge on Thursday.