Woman, 18, slams Uber for offering her an $11 REFUND instead of taking action against a driver who sexually assaulted and photographed her.
Laura Merser, 18, says she was sexually assaulted by an Uber driver
- Laura Merser, 18, says she was sexually assaulted by an Uber driver
- Claims her driver turned off the app during ride home in Sydney
- She says he pulled off her clothes and groped her while taking pictures
- The teenager is calling for tighter safety measures against Uber
A young woman claiming her Uber driver pulled off her clothes and tried to fondle her has slammed the ride-sharing app for refunding her $11 fare instead of taking action against the driver.
Laura Merser, 18, claimed her Uber driver pulled over fifty metres from her Sydney home after picking her up from a friend’s birthday before forcing himself on her.
‘He was trying to kiss me and my mouth was closed and I was just crying and pulling away, and he just kept going and rubbing himself on me,’ she told A Current Affair.
Ms Merser said she fled and called police but decided not to lodge a formal report and instead chose to follow up the incident with Uber.
But she was shocked when the ride-sharing app simply tried to refund her $11 fare and did not disclose what disciplinary action was taken against the driver, if any.
The 18-year-old’s lawyer said the chilling incident had ‘wrecked Laura’s life’.
Ms Merser said the ride started normally but started to take a turn once her driver told her she was pretty and that he was making a music video.
After telling her she looked like a model and inviting her to star in the music video, she said the driver offered to finish the ride free of charge.
The teenager fled the car and called police, taking a screenshot of the driver from her phone
He asked to take photographs of her, making her feel comfortable by offering to use her phone, but then lunged for her and tried to pull down her top to expose her breasts.
‘He started forcing it down, then taking photos, then he just started forcing himself on me, moved my underwear aside and started touching me,’ she told A Current Affair.
Ms Merser is now making a civil claim against Uber for breaching its duty of care.
The teenager is calling for tighter safety measures against the controversial app
‘Uber had a duty of care to Laura. They breached that by failing to ensure the drivers were suitable, and failing to ensure the safety of passengers,’ her lawyer Lisa Flynn said.
An Uber spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia the safety of passengers is a ‘top priority’ and that contact had been made with Ms Merser.
‘Our thoughts are with the woman involved. As soon as we were made aware of this incident, we immediately removed the driver from the platform.’
The spokesperson said if a complaint is lodged with police against one of its drivers it would co-operate fully during their investigation.
The driver involved had undergone a criminal background check and attained a driver authority from the Queensland Government before he started employment with Uber.
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