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- Police in San Bruno, California, arrested a Lyft driver who they say raped a woman who requested a ride home from a bar on Saturday.
- Tonye Kolokolo was booked in a county jail on charges of rape and false imprisonment, police said.
- Lyft says it immediately deactivated the driver and is working to assist authorities in the investigation.
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A Lyft driver in northern California was arrested Saturday on allegations he raped a 25-year-old woman who had requested a ride home from a bar.
Tonye Kolokolo was arrested by the San Bruno police on charges of raping an intoxicated person and false imprisonment with violence, according to police records.
"The victim reported that she ordered a ride from Lyft the previous evening while intoxicated at a bar in the City of San Mateo," the police report reads.
"Sometime after being picked up by the driver, the victim believed that she passed out in the backseat of the rideshare vehicle. The driver then took the victim to his residence in the City of Tracy without her request or permission, where it is alleged that he had nonconsensual intercourse with her."
The suburb of Tracy is about 70 miles southeast of San Francisco.
A Lyft spokesperson said the driver was "permanently removed" from its app when the company learned about the arrest.
"What is being described is terrifying and the driver’s access to Lyft has been permanently removed," the representative said in an email. "We responded immediately and have been in close contact with the rider since the incident. We are working with the authorities and will continue to help in every way we can."
In order to work for Lyft, drivers must pass a comprehensive background check that also includes driving records. The company says it also employs continuous criminal monitoring that provides the company with immediate notification of any disqualifying criminal convictions.
Still, accusations and arrests are rampant on both Uber and Lyft’s apps. Last week, a man in Wisconsin was accused of sexually assaulting a passenger and another was accused of pointing a gun at a passenger. A week before that, a driver in Nebraska was arrested for an incident that occurred in May when he was accused of sexual assault.
On its website, Lyft says riders should always check the license plate and make of the vehicle before getting into a ride. The app also supports real-time tracking and location sharing, and the company has a 24/7 critical response safety team.
"By using the Lyft Platform and participating in the Services, you agree to accept such risks and agree that Lyft is not responsible for the acts or omissions of Users on the Lyft Platform or participating in the Services," the company’s terms of service reads.
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