An Uber passenger named Adam Salaz has been accused of attempting to kidnap his driver at gunpoint in Grand Junction, Colorado, on January 10.
Police said the driver escaped by jumping out of the moving car and fleeing on foot; her passenger later took the car and fled the scene.
Salaz, 23, was later arrested by local authorities in Carlsbad, New Mexico, on charges related to the incident.
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An Uber passenger has been arrested and accused of attempting to kidnap his driver at gunpoint.
On January 10 in Grand Junction, Colorado, an unidentified female Uber driver picked up a male passenger in a nearby town around midnight, according to the Grand Junction Police Department. During the ride, police said the passenger unexpectedly pulled out a gun and demanded she drive him to the desert.
The driver escaped by jumping from the moving vehicle and causing it to crash into a fence. As the driver fled on foot, the passenger took her SUV and fled the scene, according to police. The driver had minor injuries.
The passenger, who police later identified as 23-year-old Adam Salaz, was found and
in Carlsbad, New Mexico — nearly 700 miles away. The car wasn't found.
UPDATE (1/11/2020 7:47pm): The suspect in this case has been contacted by law enforcement officials in Carlsbad, New Mexico and is currently in custody. The stolen vehicle has not be located. We appreciate everyone who shared this information and called in tips. https://t.co/lw3eF9MgS8— Grand Junction PD (@GrandJunctionPD) January 12, 2020
Salaz is currently being held in the Eddy County Detention Center in Carlsbad, New Mexico, on charges related to the incident, according to the Grand Junction Police Department.
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Courtesy of the Grand Junction Police Department
Uber didn't immediately respond to Insider's request for comment on the incident. We first found the story from ABC News.
Uber and Lyft have been grappling with protecting drivers and passengers
The news comes as rideshare apps such as Lyft and Uber grapple with the safety of both passengers and drivers.
While many high-profile incidents highlight the dangers of being a rideshare passenger, this incident shows that drivers are at risk, too.
Some female drivers — who make up roughly 19% of Uber drivers and 30% of Lyft drivers — have reported having difficulty getting help from their respective rideshare company when incidents occur.
Last year, Uber released its first-ever safety report detailing sexual assaults and deaths that took place during Uber rides in 2017 and 2018. The report revealed 3,045 sexual assault reports in 2018 alone. Of those incidents, 42% of those reporting sexual assault were drivers, Vox reported.
In the report, the company also noted that 99.9% of its trips were safe, with 2.3 billion trips made in 2017 and 2018.
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