Lawsuit Claims Uber Driver Sexually Assaulted Sleeping Woman in SoCal

An Uber driver in Southern California is facing allegations of sexually assaulting a female passenger who had fallen asleep in the back seat of his vehicle. The incident, which occurred in 2021, is the subject of a lawsuit filed by the victim, referred to as Jane EN Doe, in the Beverly Hills Superior Court. The lawsuit accuses Uber Technologies Inc. of sexual battery and assault, gender violence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligence. Jane Doe is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages for the traumatic incident.

The lawsuit also criticizes Uber’s response to the widespread issue of sexual assaults against female passengers, describing it as “woefully inadequate.” According to the lawsuit, numerous female Uber passengers have experienced unlawful sexual misconduct, including rape, sexual assault, and physical violence, at the hands of Uber drivers since 2014.

The incident in question took place on August 21, 2021, when Jane Doe requested an Uber ride home after a night of drinking with friends in downtown Los Angeles. The driver stopped approximately a quarter of a mile away from Doe’s destination and proceeded to sexually assault her while she was asleep in the back seat, according to the lawsuit.

As a result of the assault, Jane Doe claims to have suffered significant emotional and physical distress, including pain, shock, emotional trauma, physical symptoms of distress, embarrassment, loss of self-esteem, disgrace, humiliation, and diminished enjoyment of life.

Uber responded to the lawsuit by stating that they would not comment on the specific details of the case but emphasized that they have implemented a range of safety measures to protect riders. An Uber spokesperson expressed horror at the reported incident and stated that the company deactivated the driver as soon as they were made aware of the incident, while also cooperating with law enforcement in their investigation.

Among the safety features implemented by Uber are emergency contact options for riders and trip monitors designed to detect any unusually prolonged stops during a ride.