Philadelphia, PA — A Philadelphia cab driver has been released on $10,000 bail after he was accused of attacking an Uber customer with his smart phone late last week. Yellow Cab driver Anass Rhammar was arrested and booked by the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) after he assaulted Brian Hassert of Nevada City, CA who was visiting Philly on business.
“It was my last day in Philadelphia,” said a relieved Mr. Hassert speaking from his Nevada City home office, “and I was waiting for my Uber ride in front of the Double Tree on Broad Street. I was just looking down at my phone when this guy walks up and starts yelling at me. After a few seconds he said something like ‘you can take your Uber and shove it up your ass.’ I couldn’t really understand exactly what he said because he had a heavy accent.”
According to the PPD report, Mr. Rhammar was upset with losing fares to Uber, and was particularly angry at the Double Tree for not “setting him up like they agreed to.”
“Mr. Rhammar apparently was upset that he was losing cab fares to smart phone users,” said Captain Noah Johns speaking of the incident. “We haven’t had any trouble with other cab drivers, but it’s no secret that they’re not getting the business they used to.”
Uber is a technology platform. The Uber app connects driver-partners and riders, according to the company’s website. All of the vehicles are privately owned by the drivers. Although it maybe only be a few years old, in many places they’re having a disastrous effect on the local taxi industry. The City of Brotherly Love is no exception.
“All week I felt a little weird hailing my Uber ride,” continued Mr. Hassert. “Every time I walked through the lobby, the people there would ask me if they wanted them to get a cab for me. Of course I said no, but when I made my way out to the curb, I could feel the cab drivers just staring at me. You’d think with my caution I would have seen that asshole coming, but like everyone else, I was just staring down at my phone watching my Uber car arrive.”
According to the PPD, Anass Rhammar is set to appear before a judge next month. He has pleaded no contest to the charges. Mr. Hassert’s injuries were minor.