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Police: Uber Driver Shoots, Kills Passenger on Colorado Interstate

While police said the driver worked for Uber, they could not confirm whether he was working at the time of the shooting.
Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images
An Uber car waits for a client in Manhattan on June 14, 2017 in New York City.

DENVER — An Uber driver fatally shot a passenger while the two were in a vehicle on an interstate in Denver.

Denver police department spokesman Sonny Jackson said preliminary information points to a conflict between the driver and passenger. He said shots were fired by the driver on Interstate 25 shortly before 3 a.m. Friday.

"This is very preliminary, but it appears there was an Uber driver and his passenger got into a conflict inside his vehicle, shots were exchanged, shots were fired and the passenger it appears was shot," Denver Police spokesperson Sonny Jackson told KUSA-TV in Denver.

While police said the driver worked for Uber, they could not confirm whether he was working at the time of the shooting.

The driver and victim were transported to hospitals. Jackson said the victim was pronounced dead, and the driver has been treated and released.

"We do know this person was an Uber driver. We’re going to determine if he was actually on a ride when this happened. We’re going to determine what the relationship was between what appears to be a passenger and a driver prior to this particular ride," Jackson told KUSA-TV. "That’s the one thing I would stress anyone that was on the highway at this time ….if they saw a conflict going on inside this vehicle please let us know."

This is just the latest troublesome incident for the ride-hailing company in Denver and the state of Colorado. In April, Denver law professor Nancy Leong fired off a series of tweets describing how her Uber driver told her he was going to take her to a hotel instead of the Denver International Airport. At a stop light, she said she screamed and pounded on the vehicle windows until nearby construction workers noticed and the driver then unlocked the doors and Leong got out.

Last year, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission fined Uber $8.9 million after regulators found 57 Uber drivers over the previous year and a half were on the job despite having felony convictions, major moving violations or were driving with a suspended, revoked or canceled driver's license.

The commission in April reduced the fine to $4.5 million after some violations were dismissed and a judge has not ruled on Uber's petition that the commission exceeded its authority with the penalty.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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