ORLANDO, Fla. – A ride-share driver shot and seriously wounded a man early Tuesday in Orange County after the man struck her and his girlfriend while she was taking the couple to a hotel, according to deputies.
The shooting happened around 12:40 a.m. on John Young Parkway at State Road 528.
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Detectives said the rideshare driver told them she fired her gun at Daniel Pacheco, 27, after he charged towards her when she kicked him out of the car.
The woman said she had witnessed Pacheco hit his girlfriend prior to them entering her vehicle, and he once again hit her inside the car. Investigators said the driver was also hit by Pacheco inside the vehicle.
Deputies said they received a 911 call from the driver who said she had picked up a man and his girlfriend in downtown Orlando.
The Orange County Sheriff’s Office said Pacheco is in stable condition and has been charged with battery.
As of now, no charges have been filed against the driver who shot Pacheco. The identity of the driver and the girlfriend have not been released.
Detectives will send the case to the State Attorney’s Office for a determination if any other charges should be filed in the case.
Sally Collins said she has been driving for Lyft and Uber for the past six years. She said after hearing about the incident, she will continue to keep safety at top of mind.
“I’ve kicked people out of my car, you know, I’ve pulled over on the side of the road in a safe location and been like ‘you’re out’. I’ll call the police,” Collins said. “It is not the safest idea to be out as a female driving in the middle of the night, picking up god knows where. So, I’m always paying attention.”
Collins said she avoids picking up rides late at night in the downtown area, which is where the driver told deputies she picked up Pacheco.
“I’ve really looked at it as I am the designated driver for all these people, so I feel bad having to kick somebody out, but I’m not going to be abused in my own vehicle,” Collins said.
Despite the driver being armed, the websites for both Uber and Lyft state loaded weapons are prohibited for both drivers and passengers.