Uber Kidnapping: Passenger Gets Wild Ride During Bizarre ‘High-Speed Chase’

A man alleges an Uber kidnapping by a now-fired driver

Ryan Simonetti’s tweet regarding his Uber kidnapping was the beginning of one bizarre story. Simonetti, the CEO of a start-up company named Convene, was a regular Uber user, but his latest ride was apparently one he will never forget. The driver allegedly went rogue and set the stage for a very wild ride.

According to the Washington Post, Simonetti and two friends had wrapped up meetings in Washington D.C., and grabbed a ride via Uber. When they approached the car, they saw a taxi inspector talking with the driver. They got in the car, and the inspector walked away. The Uber driver started driving, but the taxi inspector followed, with his lights flashing.

Simonetti says he asked the Uber driver what was going on, and the driver replied, “Oh no, he’s not a real cop.” Then the driver apparently said, “I’m sorry, we’re going to have to run this red light.” The passenger says that soon they were going “well above the speed limit” and “it was like an episode of ‘Cops.'” He says the Uber kidnapping went on for eight to 10 minutes.

The driver is said to have nearly hit other cars multiple times, and the passengers were begging him to slow down so they could jump out. Simonetti says he was physically trying to force the driver to brake, and he threatened him as well. Still, the driver wouldn’t stop, saying he would end up with a $2,000 fine if the inspector caught up to him. It seems that once the driver pulled onto an exit ramp, the taxi inspector blocked the car and the three passengers jumped out. The Uber driver took off, even going the wrong way up the ramp.

Though the Uber kidnapping story sounds like a wild tale, the D.C. Taxicab Commission has confirmed there was an incident. It seems the taxi inspector initially checked into the car because it had Virginia license plates, and the inspector wanted to ensure it had been an official Uber pickup. The driver fled before the inspector could sort through the details.

Reports via MSN indicate that the Uber kidnapping driver is now out of a job, and the D.C. Taxicab commission is officially investigating. Uber is cooperating with the investigation, and they have “deactivated the driver pending the outcome.” Uber has been in the news a few times over the past few months, but this report definitely cranks things up a notch.

Despite the wild ride, Ryan Simonetti later tweeted that everybody ultimately was safe and he thanked friends and followers for their concerns. While some think the Uber kidnapping story almost seems like a set-up, apparently this one is legit. That is one Uber driver who may want to rethink his career choice, however.

[Image via Bossip]