Uber driver suspected in Michigan shootings, six dead
A Michigan man who worked as an Uber driver was under arrest on Sunday in the fatal shooting of six people in Kalamazoo, as police investigated reports he may have driven customers of the car-hailing service the night of the rampage.
Prosecutors alleged that Jason Dalton, 45, opened fire, apparently at random, in parking lots outside an apartment building, a car dealership and at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Kalamazoo, about 150 miles (240 km) west of Detroit.
Two other people were wounded, including a teenage girl who was initially thought to have died.
Authorities could not confirm Dalton was working for Uber during the nearly five-hour shooting spree on Saturday evening. He was arrested without incident on Sunday while driving away from the parking lot of an area bar.
An Uber representative confirmed that Dalton was a company driver and had passed background checks. The representative referred questions about whether Dalton was working at the time of the shootings to police.
The victims “appear to be chosen at random, because they were available,” Kalamazoo County Prosecuting Attorney Jeff Getting said. “They were shot multiple times, multiple - nine, 10, 11 shell casings at each of these scenes.”
The attack also prompted renewed interest in how Uber vets drivers, who use their personal vehicles to ferry customers at prices that are generally below those of established taxi companies. Critics say the company’s vetting process is flawed because it never meets with potential drivers in person.
WOOD-TV, a Grand Rapids station, quoted police as saying they were investigating reports Dalton dropped off Uber fares at a hotel and then killed four women and wounded a 14-year-old girl at the nearby Cracker Barrel. The teenager was in critical condition, Michigan State Police said.
Again bloody maniac was slayering people for some time and where was the police? Maybe arresting more dark skinned young children? That shit makes me ask some questions. For what those officers recieve their bread? Seems that we see again the classical rotten police system in our country. I feel very sad about that.
Samaria Rice Presents: The Justice for Tamir Speak Out Tour
Join us in welcoming Samaria Rice to our campus as she kicks off her speaking tour to fight for justice for her son Tamir. She will engage us in a discussion about police violence, being a Black mom, and the next steps in the fight for Black life. Please join us for transformative conversation.