Early Tuesday morning, 16-year-old Eliza Wasni allegedly did the unthinkable. According to police, the teen wandered around a Skokie, Illinois Walmart and stole a knife and machete, a crime allegedly caught on surveillance cameras. Then, the teen allegedly used the weapons to fatally stab her Uber driver, 34-year-old Grant Nelson. As ABC 7 reports, Nelson was Eliza Wasni’s third Uber driver of the day, picking her up after her alleged shoplifting spree.
Investigators say that at 1:12 a.m., Wasni took an Uber to the Des Plaines train station. She then took a second Uber from the train station to the Walmart and arranged for a third Uber to pick her up from the store.
On Wednesday, 16-year-old Wasni was charged as an adult with first-degree murder. Not surprisingly, she was denied bail after appearing in bond court where prosecutors called the vicious stabbing attack “heinous and unprovoked.”
According to Cook County prosecutors, victim Grant Nelson had the fatal misfortune to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. He unwittingly picked up the teen, unaware that she had violent intentions. After Eliza Wasni got into the back seat of his vehicle, prosecutors allege that the teen repeatedly stabbed the driver from her position behind him. According to Assistant State’s Attorney Michelle Cunningham, Nelson attempted to flee from his unlikely attacker by jumping out of his car and running for help at a nearby building.
“The victim runs to the lobby door and is heard banging and screaming, ‘Help me, help me, I’m going to die.”
The Wilmette Patch reports that after brutally stabbing her Uber driver within minutes of getting in his car, Wansi attempted to flee the scene of the carnage. She allegedly stole his vehicle and attempted to drive away. Her escape was thwarted when she hit a median. Prosecutors say that Eliza Wansi then tried to get away on foot, stripping off her bloody shirt and attempting to evade police in just her bra and leggings.
Police were alerted to the horrific crime when they received 911 calls that a man was screaming for help in the area. When they arrived on scene at 3:22 a.m, Wansi was shirtless and still armed with the stolen knife and machete. According to officers, they repeatedly demanded that she drop the weapons, but she refused. Ultimately, Eliza Wansi was Tased at the scene.
First responders found Grant Nelson hiding in a 2014 Hyundai Sonata, he immediately identified himself as an Uber driver who had been stabbed by his white female passenger and that she was likely a juvenile.
So sad, such a waste of a decent human life. This generation between drugs, and stupidity have truly lost their way— rene simmons (@simmons6654) June 1, 2017
Wow. So tragic. ???? He survived long enough to give police description of girl.— Mark J (@marjenjr) June 1, 2017
White privilege is a helluva drug.— elisabeth epps* (@elisabeth) June 1, 2017
Paramedics rushed Nelson, who had been stabbed multiple times, to St. Francis Hospital. Unfortunately, doctors were unable to save his life.
When Eliza Wansi appeared in court on Wednesday, Cook County Judge Michael J. Hood called the senseless murder a “random act of violence” before denying the teen bond. Judge Hood also pointed out in court that Wasni and Nelson didn’t know each other before attack, which he called “extremely violent in nature.”
As Heavy reports, Grant Nelson’s sister has spoken out about her brother’s character in the aftermath of his violent murder. According to Alex Nelson, her Uber driving brother was an animal lover and all around “good person.” Needless to say, Nelson’s sister says that Grant didn’t deserve the fate allegedly meted out to him by 16-year-old Eliza Wansi.
“He had probably the most extensive collection of classical music of anyone I’ve ever met in life… I want people to know Grant was a good person. He was not a vindictive person. He was not a cruel person. He didn’t deserve this fate.”
While Eliza Wasni has been charged with first-degree murder and as an adult for the role she allegedly played in her Uber driver’s senseless and brutal slaying, the teen will not face the death penalty if she is convicted, as Illinois has not been a “death penalty state” since 2011. The maximum sentence Wasni could receive for the stabbing is life in prison.
[Featured Image by Prath/Shutterstock]