#FakeUberDriver

Fake Uber Driver Arrested After Brutal Sexual Assault of Passenger in Westlake: LAPD

POSTED 12:08 PM, APRIL 11, 2016, BY MELISSA PAMER AND SARA WELCH

A man who pretended to be an Uber driver and brutally sexually assaulted a female passenger, prompting police to shoot at him, has been arrested less than a week after the violent attack in the Westlake area, Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said Monday.

Police respond to a report of a woman screaming inside a vehicle April 3, 2016, in Westlake. (Credit: Loudlabs)

Dartanyum Larmar Smith, 39, was arrested at a South Los Angeles home on suspicion of kidnapping early Saturday morning.

The incident began about 3:30 a.m. Sunday, April 3, when LAPD received a call about a woman screaming from inside an SUV in the area of 1300 block of Ingraham Street.

Officers did not have the exact address when responding and began searching parked cars along dark streets for the assault, Beck said at morning news conference.

As they drive by … they hear the screams. They can see the assault going on in the back seat of this SUV," Beck said.

The officers tried to get into the vehicle, but it was locked. When they began smashing the windows, the attacker jumped into the driver’s seat and began accelerating away.

Glass remained at the scene where LAPD officers smashed the window of a vehicle in which a sex assault was taking place in Westlake on April 3, 2016. (Credit: KTLA)

Smith allegedly accelerated toward officers, one of whom was struck by the SUV's door. One officer fired a single shot that didn’t strike the driver, Beck said.

As the SUV sped away, with the female victim still inside, the officers called for backup and jumped into their patrol vehicle to follow.

About four blocks away, after a frantic search, they found the victim, dumped onto the street, Beck said. She was discovered at James M. Wood Boulevard and Columbia Avenue and was taken by ambulance to a hospital.

The driver escaped.

The case was assigned to the Los Angeles Police Department’s elite Robbery-Homicide Division, and the FBI helped, Beck said.

DNA evidence from a sexual assault kit and the scrapings from the victim’s fingernails led to a match in a state crime database, according to the chief. Investigators found Smith’s location and served a search warrant that led to his arrest, Beck said.

The chief praised the victim, saying she fought “valiantly” against her assailant, despite being choked into unconsciousness three times and brutally sexually assaulted.

A friend had ordered an Uber for the victim, who was waiting at Eighth Street and Vermont Avenue when an SUV pulled up and its driver asked if she was waiting for Uber, Beck and L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

He was not an Uber driver. He posed as an Uber driver. That’s a very important distinction,” Beck said. “With some trepidation, she entered the vehicle.”

Smith drove the victim about two blocks east and sexually assaulted her, Beck said.

“This was a young woman who through absolutely no fault of her own was targeted and selected right off the street by a predator,” Beck said.

He praised the quick work of investigators who found the suspect, saying he was the kind of individual who might have embarked on a series of such crimes across the city.

Smith has served prison time for robbery, Beck said.

Uber, Beck said, had been very helpful during the investigation.

"There’s no blame to the victim here … but it is so important that when you’re using a ride application like Uber, to make sure the person you’re getting into the car of is the person they say they are," Beck said.

The Uber app tells users the license plate of the driver's vehicle, as well as a description of that vehicle. Sometimes the app includes a photo of the driver as well.

Police initially said the suspect's name was Dartanyun Lamar Smith, but later clarified that his name is Dartanyum Larmar Smith. Inmate records show arrests for both names.

The suspect was being held on $1 million bail.

Smith is a documented gang member, according to Officer Norma Eisenman of LAPD's Media Relations Section.

http://ktla.com/2016/04/11/fake-uber-driver-arrested-after-brutal-sexual-assault-of-passenger-in-westlake-lapd/

Skokie Police: Man impersonating Uber driver raped 2 women

POSTED:MAR 21 2017 05:06PM CDT

SUN-TIMES MEDIA WIRE - A man impersonating an Uber driver drove two women to north suburban Skokie and sexually assaulted them in the last month, according to police.

Musaab S. Afandi, 33, was charged with three counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and two counts of aggravated kidnapping, all felonies, according to Skokie police. At 4:38 a.m. on Feb. 12 and again at 3:33 a.m. on March 19, Skokie police responded to 911 calls from females reporting they had been sexually assaulted by a man impersonating a ride-share service driver, police said

Both victims told police they were picked up outside different Chicago bars or nightclubs after ordering an Uber, police said. After picking up the victims, the man drove them to Skokie, where he sexually assaulted them in his vehicle.

The females provided information that led to Afandi’s arrest, police said.

Afandi, of Glenview, was ordered held without bond at the Cook County Jail on Tuesday, police said. He is next scheduled to appear in court April 11.

The Skokie Police Department reminds ride-share service customers to verify the identity of the driver and their car before you get inside, wait inside for your ride to arrive, keep in touch with friends and family and share trip details with them, take note of the driver’s rating on the app and always ride in the back passenger side seat when riding alone.

Anyone with information about these or similar crimes is asked to call Skokie police at (847) 982-5900.

http://www.fox32chicago.com/news/crime/243024206-story

Police: Fake Rideshare Driver Scams Passenger For $1K

 

Police are searching for a fake Uber driver that they say is stealing money from customers by asking for a credit card after claiming there is something wrong with the passenger’s payment.

Police say a Mount Prospect resident was picked up by someone who looked like an Uber driver in Chicago near Clark and Ontario streets. The victim was taken all the way back to Mount Prospect when the driver claimed her payment wouldn’t go through the app. He then demanded she pay with her debit card and required the victim to enter her pin number on his phone, police say. The victim told police a few days later her bank account was short $1,200.

Mount Prospect Police said they are looking for the alleged scammer.

“Everybody needs money for the holidays and some people don’t care how they get it,” said Det. Dirk Ollech. “This victim saw an Uber sticker in the vehicle but those obviously can be obtained through other means.”

Katie Lawson, an Uber customer, said she was upset after hearing about the crime.

“I would be very worried if I were put in that position,” she told NBC 5. “I’m not sure what I would do, but I wouldn’t necessarily hand it over and think that would be OK.”

Since October, Chicago Police have reported several similar incidents, adding up to thousands of dollars from victims. Uber says it offers safety tips for riders to follow—but the police say using common sense is key.

“It seems like maybe people are becoming a little bit too trusting," Ollech said. “Just not following the safety steps.”

 The decal on the window isn’t enough to go by, police say. Uber encourages riders to check the license plate against the one shown in the app, to make sure the driver matches the photo in the app and to ask for the driver’s name—and to never accept solicitations.

Mount Prospect and Chicago police are working together in an ongoing investigation.



Source: Police: Fake Rideshare Driver Scams Passenger For $1K | NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/fake-uber-driver-scam-406372005.html#ixzz4T1Xp3vsp 
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Fake Uber driver in Maserati arrested for sex assault

POSTED 6:33 AM, NOVEMBER 16, 2016, BY MIKE WILLEUPDATED AT 09:04AM, NOVEMBER 16, 2016

SAN DIEGO - A man who allegedly posed as an Uber driver was arrested after a couple he picked up in University City reported a sex assault during their ride late Tuesday night.

According to San Diego Police Sargent Bannan, the driver asked the couple at the Westfield UTC mall if they ordered an Uber and the pair subsequently got into his vehicle for a ride.

While in the passenger seat of the man's black 4-door Maserati, the driver reached over and grabbed the male passenger's genitalia.  The victim slapped the driver's hand and had the vehicle pull over.  The distraught couple got out to call police.

San Diego Police caught up to the Maserati driver in the 9400 block of Gold Coast Drive.  The driver refused field sobriety tests on scene and was later arrested on sex assault charges.

Police did determine that the driver was not associated with the ride share company Uber.

http://fox5sandiego.com/2016/11/16/man-posing-as-uber-arrested-for-sex-assault/