Face it, if you have been raped by an Uber driver or a Lyft driver, you are far from alone.
Though Uber and Lyft are relatively new ways for consumers to interact with service providers, the story of using one’s position to prey on a victim is a very old story indeed. Several points of difference do make it easier for an Uber driver, for example, to rape a passenger he (or she) encounters. First, the Uber driver is driving for an entire shift, meeting one new person after another. Second, the Uber driver is very often one-on-one with the passenger. Third, the Uber vehicle provides privacy in and of itself. Fourth, the Uber vehicle provides an easy and fast way for the driver to get to an even more private place, such as a home or a motel. A fifth point of difference, worth pointing out, is that alcohol may make a victim more likely to be an Uber customer, while also making that same victim more vulnerable. A potential victim headed out for celebration or relaxation and intending to have a few drinks is, ironically, being very smart if she (or he) decides to not drive, but rather, to Uber. That is what smart adults do, it’s what our parents and our teachers and our government leaders tell us to do — don’t drive if you’re going to have a drink. So the smart thing that the potential victim plans on doing might actually put her in a position to be in a car with her own potential rapist, and less likely to be able to fight off the attack.
Let’s be clear. Uber did not invent rape (nor did Lyft). Rape has been part of society for a lot longer than Uber and Lyft have. The Uber and the Lyft systems just make rape a little more convenient for the rapist.
So it’s not unique and it’s not unusual, but we have to address it anyway. The quantity of women coming forward after recent allegations of rape and other sexual assault and harassment by prominent and powerful players is a great way of shining a light on rape. There is no stigma to having survived a rape, whether the rapist is an Uber or Lyft driver, a Hollywood mogul, a politician, an acquaintance, or a random unknown person. It’s important that rape survivors know they are not alone. There are many support groups and other places to get help, including our law firm. We’ve heard from a great deal of women who have survived rape from Uber and Lyft drivers. The important thing is to get help.
If you or your friend or relative was raped by an Uber or Lyft driver, please call us for help. We’ll give the rape victim a confidential (and free) consultation during which we can discuss her (or his) rights. One possibility is a lawsuit against the driver, another possibility is a lawsuit against Uber or Lyft for the rape. Other possibilities exist as well. Though it’s a relatively new niche in the law, Estey & Bomberger has ramped up and become a specialist in this niche area. We’ve always specialized in helping survivors of sexual abuse, and now that specialty has extended to rape cases involving Uber and Lyft. More importantly, perhaps, we specialize in successful end-results — in the form of multi-million dollar awards for our clients. And this expertise and specialization comes from a law firm that is a true partner with its clients, acting as a compassionate mentor and guiding the client down the stressful road. No single firm in the US has achieved more record-setting settlements, verdicts and other results for victims of rape and sexual abuse.
Incidents and Alleged Incidents in the Very Recent News
It is not difficult to find out just how many Uber or Lyft drivers have raped passengers. Googling “Uber driver rape statistics California” just as one example brings up over ten million entries.
A very abbreviated selection follows here:
- Orange County, CA: Uber driver rapes unconscious teen
- San Antonio, TX: Uber driver took unconscious woman home, raped her
- Davie, FL: Lyft Driver Orally Raped a Teen Girl
- Zionsville, IN: Former Lyft Driver Accused of Raping Passenger
- Kent, WA: Uber Driver Accused of Raping Passenger
Trust your Own Advice
If your best friend were raped, by an Uber or Lyft driver or by anyone, you’d tell her or him to be strong, to share the story and to let others help. If you are the rape victim, take your own good advice. Any blame or shame you feel is misdirected, and rightfully belongs with the perpetrator, and possibly with the company that failed to protect you.
Recruit for your team to help you heal. You’ll need your friends and loved ones, possibly your trusted clergy person, and often, a lawyer. In our significant experience, the victims that find it easiest to heal and reclaim their lives are those that share with family and friends. These people will understand why you are suddenly extra emotional, or oddly unemotional, even if you have a hard time understanding it yourself. Let your friends fill for you the role you know you would fill for them if the situation were reversed.
Other steps to take:
1. Report to the police — as soon as possible
2. Get immediate medical attention
3. Save any evidence
4. Report to Uber or Lyft
5. Get psychological counseling
6. Get help and support from your loved ones; this is not your fault
7. Do your research and select a lawyer for a free consultation — ask a loved one to join you for moral support
Call or contact us today for your free consultation and find out how we can help.