Seattle woman sues Uber, says driver’s sex assault was caught on video

A lawsuit filed against Uber on behalf of a Seattle woman claims a driver sexually assaulted her during a ride in 2018, and that she recorded cellphone video of the alleged crime as it happened.

The incident is also part of an open investigation by Seattle police, although the driver--now believed to live in Texas--has not been arrested.

According to the attorneys representing the woman, she began recording the Uber driver when he repeatedly asked if she was single, and she “liked single.”

Attorney Daniel Swinford with the Washington Law Center--who represents the woman, says she used the phone’s camera because she feared for her safety.

“My client got very uncomfortable with where the conversation was going,” said Swinford. “And it prompted her, rightly so, to start recording.”

The Uber driver is seen in the video reaching back and touching the woman while saying, “Seeing how you look so nice.”

“In the video, she clearly wants to get out of the car as soon as she possibly can,” said Swinford. Seattle’s police case includes a claim that the driver overcharged the woman $60 after he agreed to drop her off immediately after the alleged assault, instead of at the location she requested when booking the ride.

“She had to go through treatment,” Swinford said. “And our claim is for damages to compensate her for the pain and suffering and the economic damages she sustained.”

In a safety report released by Uber in December, in the two years they measured -- 2017 and 2018 -- there were nearly six-thousand reports of sexual assault involving passengers and drivers.

“You just have to exercise a large degree of caution before getting in the car with a stranger,” Swinford said.

Uber declined KIRO-7’s request for comment.