Georgia police on Thursday (14 December) have arrested and charged an Uber driver for allegedly raping a 16-year-old girl, who banged several doors in her neighbourhood with pants still around her ankles for help.
Police said the assault happened early Monday morning after the teenage girl took the cab, driven by Abdoulie Jagne, who first raped her before dropping her at her destination.
The victim told police that she, along with some friends, were drinking at a local bar Sunday night, after which one of her friends booked the cab for her. The 58-year-old accused picked her up but instead of driving her to the assigned location, he raped her somewhere along South Norcross Tucker Road in unincorporated Norcross, Gwinnett.
Eventually, he dropped her off near her apartment complex along Old Norcross Tucker Road, the Gwinnett Daily Post reported.
Gwinnett police spokeswoman Corporal Michele Pihera said the girl was found by some neighbours in an "extremely intoxicated" state.
"Once she was dropped off at the apartment complex she began banging on several of the homes in the neighborhood, and one of those residents called 911," Pihera said. "One of those neighbors did notice that her pants were around her ankles."
The police spokeswoman added that the girl was soon taken to a hospital for an evaluation, while the friend who booked the Uber ride was contacted, who gave police identifying information on the driver and his vehicle.
During investigation, it was found that Jagne had only been driving for a couple of months. Police said Uber is working closely with the investigators and evidence gathered from the ride-sharing company supported the girl's claims.
"We know that from the start location to the end location it should have taken a short amount of time, but based on the trip data it took even longer. Again, more corroboration to her story," Pihera said.
Uber also issued a statement, saying they are taking the matter very seriously. "What's reported here is horrifying beyond words. Our thoughts are with the rider and her family during this time. This driver has been permanently removed from the app," a spokesperson told the Daily Post.
Currently, police are looking for other possible victims of the 58-year-old driver and have urged them to report the crime on 770-513-5338.
This is not the first time an Uber driver has been accused of raping a passenger. The app cab company has faced a lot of scrutiny for a number of alleged sexual assault cases involving its drivers.
In August, a US woman allegedly jumped from her Uber car after the driver demanded she pay for her journey by having sex with him. Muhammad Fahim had picked up the 19-year-old victim after she requested a ride through the taxi hire app.