San Francisco Uber driver assaulted and coughed on by rude customer after a mask freakout. Is this attack more Asian racism?
What an Uber freakout! Several Uber passengers who refused to wear masks allegedly pepper sprayed their driver after he ended their ride early, according to authorities in California.
The San Francisco Police Department said that a 32-year-old car-hire driver picked up three passengers in the city’s Portola neighborhood on March 7, but ended their ride moments later when one declined to wear a face mask, violating Uber’s policy and California’s statewide mask mandate.
“An altercation occurred and a second passenger reached over the driver’s seat (from the rear seat area) and stole the driver’s cellphone from his hands. The victim grabbed and eventually regained possession of his phone,” the police statement said.
“The suspects exited the car and the third passenger reached into an open window and sprayed what is believed to be pepper spray into the vehicle and towards the driver,” it continued.
The three suspects fled and an investigation is ongoing, police said.
Several videos circulated after the incident, shot from the perspectives of the passengers and the driver, but none have been verified by NBC News.
“The behavior seen in the video is appalling,” Uber said in a statement, adding that they have been in touch with the driver since Sunday. “The rider no longer has access to Uber.”