PHOENIX — An angry Uber passenger was caught on camera repeatedly punching a driver in Laveen.
The incident happened around 2 a.m. on Monday near 51st Avenue and Baseline.
The driver, Jonathan Carroll, says this all started because of confusion over the pick-up spot. And before he knew it, he was being punched repeatedly.
He says in eight years and after more than 13,000 rides as an Uber driver, no one has ever put their hands on him. Carroll says he was on the phone with the rider for several minutes trying to figure out the rider's location.
"I'm right in front of the Spurr Lounge, the bar that's right here. There's a daycare center across the street, I don't know, it's far, man. Where exactly are you, bro," the rider asked.
Things escalated when they finally met up. After some words were exchanged, Carroll canceled the ride.
"He gets into the vehicle, and I was trying to explain where the GPS took me, and he wasn't having any part of it,” Carroll said.
“Like any driver, I've had my share of rude, crude, and disrespectful riders - especially when they're intoxicated - but you never think anything like this is going to happen to you, and then it does," Carroll added.
To make matters worse, he was two trips away from an Uber "driver bonus."
"I had been out and about since about noon, and this was at 2 a.m. So, I had been out for 14 hours trying to get this bonus, and I ended up being two short,” he said. “I didn't get it because of this incident. I couldn't just drive away and call police and not report it."
12 News is blurring the rider's face because he has not been arrested or charged at this time, but the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office is investigating.
Uber provided the following statement about the incident:
"It's disturbing to watch the attack against the driver. Violence of any kind is not tolerated on the platform and the rider has been deactivated. We stand ready to assist law enforcement with their investigation."
The only silver lining for Carroll is an Uber spokesperson said he will get that driver bonus in the coming days.
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