An Uber driver accused of sexually assaulting a female client Thursday has been taken into custody by Detroit Police, according to local newspaper reports.
Deputy Police Chief David LeValley said the suspect, Forid Ahmed, 29, turned himself in at about early Friday morning.
There has been an ongoing problem dating back to early last year of Muslim taxi drivers preying on college girls in Michigan. Whether this is yet another case, remains to be seen as police are in the early stages of their investigation.
LeValley told the Detroit News police were able to use information from the victim and Uber’s global positioning satellite technology to locate the suspect. They contacted him and he turned himself in about 2 a.m. Friday.
LeValley said detectives plan to submit their findings in the next 48 hours to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office to determine whether any charges will be filed.
He said the alleged sex assault happened at about 5:45 p.m. Thursday.
According to the police, Ahmed picked up a 21-year-old college student in the area of 5000 Cass Ave. and drove her to an unknown location, where he allegedly forced himself upon her inside his gray 2013 Toyota Camry.
LeValley said the victim is a student at Wayne State University. He said she was taken to a hospital, examined and released.
The victim was able to escape from her attacker’s car near Interstate 94 on the city’s southwest side, according to police, who said the suspect then fled in his vehicle.
A growing number of drivers working for Uber, Lyft and similar taxi services have been accused of sexually assaulting female passengers [see WND’s previous report on the problem.]
Two Uber drivers – Hassan Ibrahim, 48, and Salim Salem, 47 – were charged last year in connection with sexual assaults against female college students at Michigan State University, the Detroit Free Press reported.
The two men are accused of using their Uber driver jobs to prey upon college students.
Ibrahim was charged with fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct in connection with a Feb. 14 incident, according to East Lansing police.
Salem faces two counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct related to a Jan. 16 incident.
Both were released on $5,000 bail. Salem’s bail includes a condition that he not work as an Uber driver or cab driver in the future.
East Lansing police were investigating two drivers who allegedly made unwelcome sexual advances toward female MSU students, the Free Press reported. Multiple women complained of inappropriate touching.
In another case previously reported by WND, an Uber driver in California – Omar Mahmoud Mousa, 52, of Anaheim – was charged with raping a woman at an Anaheim motel, as WND reported. Police said they suspect Mousa likely has other victims, and they asked the public to come forward with information.
Iraqi refugee charged with rape in Connecticut
One of the more horrific cases happened in Connecticut and involved an Iraqi refugee.
Police in Hamden, Connecticut, arrested 29-year-old Ahmad Bahjat of New Haven on Feb. 26, 2016, MassLive.com reported
Investigators say they responded to Yale-New Haven Hospital on Jan. 31 for a report by an alleged victim of sexual assault. The woman had left a New Haven bar and walked to a parking area designated for Uber and taxi drivers, according to police.
Ahmad Bahjat came to America as a refugee from Iraq and is now charged with first degree sexual assault.
Bahjat pretended to be an Uber driver and the woman got into his car, believing he was the Uber driver she requested, police told WTNH News 8.
Police said Bahjat “viciously sexually assaulted” the woman. She bolted from the car, leaving several personal items behind, according to investigators. She suffered injuries to her neck, wrists and knees, police said.
They said they found evidence supporting the woman’s claim after seizing the car.
Police say Bahjat is a 2012 refugee from Iraq and holds a green card. Within 24 hours of the alleged attack, Bahjat fled the United States, taking a flight to Toronto, then to Turkey and on to Jordan. An arrest warrant was issued, officials said.
He was jailed in New York and Hamden Police charged Bahjat with first-degree sexual assault, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree unlawful restraint.
Florida driver climbs into back seat to assault woman
In another incident reported Feb. 12, 2016, by News 4 Jacksonville, Ismael Esa allegedly climbed into the back seat of his car and assaulted a female passenger who was seeking a ride home from her boyfriend’s apartment.
Esa got into the back seat, locked the doors and started fondling the woman, who was a student at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. Esa was then accused of stalking his victim, who won a court-ordered injunction against him in January, according to Jacksonville.com.
Ismael Esa was charged in Jacksonville, Florida
Dallas driver accused of rape
In another case in November 2015, Dallas police arrested a 34-year-old Lyft driver for allegedly raping a female passenger.
Loai Faheem Laila was charged in Dallas.
Police found Laila hiding in his brother’s garage, the Dallas Morning News reported. He was being held in the Dallas County Jail on a $1 million bond because a tipster told police that Laila intended to flee the country.
The victim told police she had been at a bar in Dallas and became separated from her friend around 3 a.m. Nov. 7 in the 2900 block of McKinney Avenue.
She told police she ordered a ride from an app-based service, and she was picked up by a man in a black Chevrolet Tahoe.
After a short distance, Laila allegedly began to inappropriately touch the woman. She resisted, and he pulled onto a “dark side street,” where he raped her in the back of the Tahoe, police said in court records.
Local media, cops cover up backgrounds of immigrants
Almost never do the police or local media provide background details on these predator drivers, such as their immigration status or country of origin.
One exception was the case of Philadelphia Uber driver Abdellah Elkaddi. In June last year, Elkaddi was accused of raping a 24-year-old woman who had called for a late-night ride home.
Abdellah Elkaddi was charged in Philadelphia.
The judge in that case set bail at $1 million, and part of the reason for the high bail was that Elkaddi is a native of Morocco and had been a U.S. citizen for seven years, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
Elkaddi, 46, was arrested hours after the woman said he attacked her early June 11, according to Philly.com.
She fell asleep during the drive home, the woman told police. She woke up to Elkaddi groping and mounting her, Philly.com reported.
“Get off of me! What are you doing?” she yelled seven or eight times as he raped her, according to court documents.