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Police: Uber driver kidnapped, assaulted female passenger


Allen Cone

Westagne Pierre, 29, of Greenbelt, Va., was arrested Thursday on charges of kidnapping, assault and for fraudulently using the victim’s credit card. Photo courtesy of Prince George's County Police Department

An Uber driver has been arrested on charges he allegedly kidnapped and assaulted a female passenger who had blacked out at a bar in District of Columbia.
Detective with the Prince George's County police in Maryland believe Westagne Pierre, 29, of Greenbelt, Virginia, picked up the victim on the night of Oct. 18, and instead of dropping her off at her home in Fairfax County, Va., he drove her to the Budget Inn in College Park, Md. He was arrested Thursday on charges of kidnapping, assault and for fraudulently using the victim's credit card.
Police say he checked into the hotel using his own information and carried her to the hotel room. Then, Pierre allegedly left the room and used the victim's credit card to make a $14 purchase at a nearby 7-Eleven, police said.
Motel surveillance video shows the driver went to the lobby and paid for a room.
Esteban Gergely, an attorney for Pierre, said his client says she consented to go to the hotel.
"She's saying she doesn't remember anything," Gergely told The Washington Post. "If she doesn't remember anything, she certainly doesn't remember saying, 'I don't want these things to happen.' "
Gergely said Pierre was released after paying $250 in bond, which was lowered substantially from the $150,000 to be originally posted.
"The facts of the case are very peculiar and they fall extremely short of being incriminating," Gergely said. "There were no facts in the statement of charges that suggested he did any injury or trauma."
Uber confirmed Friday that the company removed the driver from the app once the rider reported concerns to the company on Oct. 19.
"This is deeply upsetting," Uber spokeswoman Brooke Anderson said to The Washington Post. "The driver has been banned from the app and we have been working closely with police to support the investigation."


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