A driver for Lyft has been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault after a 25-year-old woman says she was picked up in a San Mateo bar and driven to the man's home in the Central Valley while she slept.
46-year-old Tonye Kolokolo of Tracy has been arrested by San Bruno police, and as the Associated Press reports, investigators believe he drove the woman over an hour from San Mateo to his home after she passed out and then raped her. The assault occurred around 3 a.m. Saturday, per the Chronicle. Kolokolo was booked into San Mateo County Jail on suspicion of false imprisonment and rape.
As KPIX reports, the victim reported the crime to San Bruno police, and the suspect was arrested in San Bruno. The details of how the woman escaped her attacker and got home on Saturday have not been made public.
Investigators say they are confident that Kolokolo was the driver dispatched to pick up the victim.
Lyft issued a statement Sunday saying, "Safety is fundamental to Lyft. What is being described is terrifying and the driver’s access to Lyft has been permanently removed. We responded immediately and have reached out to the rider since the incident. We are working with the authorities and will continue to help in every way we can."
The case follows on several months in which women have been making their complaints public about Lyft's sometimes inadequate responses to complaints about drivers behaving inappropriately toward female passengers. The Washington Post published a story earlier this month based on interviews with nearly a dozen women from across the country who had similar stories of feeling threatened by a driver, only to have Lyft respond by saying it would not pair the driver with that customer in the future.
Anyone with information about this case or about Kolokolo is asked to call San Bruno police at 650-616-7100.