MESA, AZ — An Uber driver has been arrested on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, endangerment and disorderly conduct, after he allegedly fired a gun at five rideshare passengers, following an argument over face masks, on Friday, October 9, 2020, in Mesa, Arizona.
During the ride, at approximately 1:00 a.m., the driver allegedly noticed a passenger’s face mask had slid below her nose. The driver, Peter Caso, allegedly demanded that the passenger fix her face covering. Minutes later, the passenger’s mask slipped again. Caso then allegedly stopped his car on the highway and pulled a gun from under his seat.
When the passengers fled, Caso allegedly darted out of the car, threw the female passenger to the ground, and fired multiple shots. He then pointed the gun at the head of a male passenger, who came to aid the female. The passengers then scrambled, hiding behind tires and road signs.
Several bullets ricocheted off the road and struck a male passenger in the arm and leg. Doctors say he may require surgery to dislodge the fragmented ammunition from his body. All of the riders suffered orthopedic injuries during the assault and require medical treatment for physical and emotional trauma.
The five victims have since retained the Law Office of Erica S. Gelfand and attorney Bryant M. Greening, of LegalRideshare LLC, a law firm that represents injured rideshare passengers, drivers and victims.
“This is yet another example of Uber’s failure to require and ensure a safe environment for every person who enters a rideshare vehicle,” Greening said. “The company’s recurrent and systemic safety failures make these events foreseeable and, sadly, likely.”
Greening stated his office has noted an increase in rideshare violence during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’ve seen mask-related assaults nationwide, with both driver and passenger victims,” Greening said. “Because Uber and Lyft have failed to properly institute and enforce safety rules, everyone in the car is on edge. Violent reactions to mask-related confrontations are becoming commonplace.”
The five victims are seeking compensatory damages from Uber and Caso for their bodily injuries, medical bills, pain and suffering and loss of normal life. The criminal case against Caso is pending.
LegalRideshare.com is the first law firm in the United States to focus exclusively on Uber, Lyft, and app-based accident and injury claims.
Greening can be reached for comment at (312) 670–9000.