What started as a normal Uber ride for one University of Denver law professor ended in every woman’s worst nightmare. Nancy Leong chronicled her nauseating experiencing in a series of Tweets directed at the ridesharing company on Tuesday morning.
The law professor was on her way to the Denver airport when her Uber driver decided he was taking her to a hotel instead. When he stopped at a light, he refused to let her out of the vehicle or open the trunk even as she screamed and pounded on the windows.
Luckily, there were construction workers nearby witnessing the frantic scenario.
Luckier still, Leong’s attacker forgot to park and brake his vehicle. He was forced to chase after it as it rolled away, giving her time to escape.
Leong says she called another Uber instead of the police because she didn’t want to miss her flight.
She asks Uber what they plan to do about the man, who does not resemble his photograph on the app and who now knows her home address.
Uber tweeted back a canned response, saying they were looking into the incident and to DM them with further information.
We take this seriously, Nancy. We’re ready to look into this right away. Please send us a DM with your information so we can look into this immediately. https://t.co/sd7yH5jmbJ
— Uber Support (@Uber_Support) April 17, 2018
According to The New York Post, Uber banned the driver from the platform. “What Nancy described is awful and unacceptable,” a company spokesperson said. “This driver has been blocked from the app and we are investigating.”
Leon’s terrifying experience led to many to share their reasons for not using the Uber service, as well as calls for a panic button which notifies police and tracks the vehicle when pressed.
The professor wasn’t the only one to encounter this type of situation in an Uber.
Though, as one user points out, the professor’s blue ‘verified’ check significantly upped Uber’s motivation to reach out to her.
An unfortunate number of Twitter users (all men, unsurprisingly) bashed Leong for calling another Uber rather than the police.
One woman pointed out how difficult it is to think straight when your mind and body are in fight-or-flight mode.
Of course, ultimately Uber and Lyft need to fingerprint their employees and figure out foolproof ways to ensure drivers on the app are who they say they are.
We will be patiently awaiting Uber’s formal response, and will update accordingly.
Hey folks, thanks for the concern and nice messages. Just wanted to say I’m fine (and I made my flight). I’ve been in touch with @Uber and they’re investigating.
— Nancy Leong (@nancyleong) April 17, 2018