SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — A San Francisco man claiming he was brutally attacked by an Uber driver wielding a hammer spoke out for the first time on Wednesday calling into question the ride service’s policies regarding background checks.
At his attorney’s office in downtown San Francisco, Roberto Chicas, 35, said that on the night of Sept. 22, he and two friends got in an UberX car in San Francisco’s Mission District.
“The next thing I remember, I was in the ICU and doctors were working on my left eye,” he said.
Chicas’ eye is closed shut and bruised; part of his face is fractured.
His attorney Harry Stern said that UberX driver Patrick Karajah, 26, took Chicas and his friends far away from their destination onto Highway 101 which led to a verbal dispute, Karajah forcing them out of the car and eventually using a hammer to strike Chicas in the head.
“I mean using Uber at the end of the night is supposed to be the responsible, safe thing to use when you are out with friends,” he said.
Stern said that Uber refuses to take responsibility for the incident.
Karajah, of Pacifica, has pleaded not guilty of assault with the deadly weapon and battery with serious bodily injury.
KCBS received an email from Uber stating, “This was a deplorable incident. We wish Mr. Chicas a quick recovery. Uber’s insurance provider is contact with both the rider and driver and of course we will continue to cooperate with authorities throughout the investigation.”
Chicas said his concern is, “…First and foremost is healing, is being able to see out of my left eye again.”