California

She thought it was her rideshare. She ended up 50 miles away, beaten and assaulted, S.F. police say

A man posing as a rideshare driver beat and raped a San Francisco woman early Saturday after picking her up at Bruno's, a Mission District bar. She was found nearly 50 miles away the next morning.
A man posing as a rideshare driver beat and raped a San Francisco woman early Saturday after picking her up at Bruno's, a Mission District bar. She was found nearly 50 miles away the next morning. KRON

A 24-year-old San Francisco woman leaving Bruno's, a Mission District bar, early Saturday morning caught a ride with a driver she'd contacted through a ride-hailing service.

Or so she thought, authorities told KTVU. A second man hiding in the back seat beat and choked her, the woman told police. Then both men sexually assaulted her.

A worker at a Safeway supermarket in Sonoma, nearly 50 miles away, discovered the woman wandering in front of the store at 5 a.m. Saturday, Sonoma County sheriff's officials told KRON.

"She had visible injuries on her face and neck and she was walking without any shoes on and the employee at Safeway stopped and asked her if she was okay," Sgt. Spencer Crum of the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department told KRON. "She said she wasn't, that she had just been sexually assaulted and so he took her into Safeway to get her some help."

The woman's boots, cellphone and identification had been stolen, police told KTVU.

Crum told KPIX that investigators don't believe the driver was actually connected to a ride-hailing service.

"We don't know if this was a crime of opportunity or people trolling around posing to be an Uber or Lyft driver trying to look for people during closing time and if they can trick someone into getting into their car," he told KRON.

“Everybody needs to be careful when you order an Uber, Lyft or other rideshare," Crum told KPIX. "Make sure you get into the right car.”

An accused serial rapist posed as a ride-hailing driver in Los Angeles for more than a year to attack at least seven women, Los Angeles authorities reported. Nicolas Morales, 44, of Santa Clarita, Calif., faces 27 felony charges including rape, sodomy, forcible oral copulation and attempted kidnapping, according to a release by the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office.

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