COSTA MESA (CBSLA.com) — An Uber driver has been booked on suspicion of sexually assaulting a passenger in Southern California.
Santa Ana police say Angel Sanchez, 37, of Costa Mesa picked up a 36-year-old woman last Thursday from a company gathering in Newport Beach, about 19 miles away. He was driving a grey Toyota Sienna.
The woman, according to police, was driven to a street near her home in Santa Ana where the sexual assault occurred.
CBS2’s Adrianna Weingold reported the woman fell asleep and woke up with the suspect allegedly assaulting her.
“She fought, broke free, got out of the car and immediately called us, obviously when we got to the scene the suspect was no longer there,” said Santa Ana Police spokesperson Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
The following day, detectives arrested Sanchez at his home in Costa Mesa on a sexual assault charge. He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.
Police said Sanchez has been a driver for Uber for over a year. Detectives believe there may be additional alleged victims.
Following the arrest, Uber released the following statement to CBS Los Angeles:
“What the rider has reported to police is deeply troubling and will not be tolerated. The driver has been banned from the app. We will continue to support police with their investigation.”
Sanchez is being held on a $100,000 bail.
Police told Weingold to remember, if you don’t feel safe you can always call for a different driver and if you are really concerned don’t ride alone.
Anyone with more information about this case was asked to call Santa Ana police detectives at (714) 245-8412.