Lawsuit Filed Against Uber for Deadly 2016 Kalamazoo Shooting Rampage
A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a man taken on a terrifying Uber ride in 2016 with a man who later went on to shoot and kill six and injure two others.
A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a man who says Uber was unreachable despite claiming to have a 24-hour helpline that would have deactivated the driver who later went on a fatal shooting rampage that same day.
Uber is accused of not responding to complaints against their driver at the time, Jason Dalton. Matt Mellen says he was taken on the terrifying ride by Uber driver Jason Dalton on February 20, 2016, just hours before Dalton went on to fatally shoot six people and injure two.
Mellen’s attorneys filed a lawsuit on September 10, 2021, on behalf of Mellen against Uber, Raiser (a technology subsidiary of Uber), and Dalton, according to Mlive. Mellen had requested an Uber ride around 4:30 p.m. on February 20, 2016, and he ended up getting Dalton as his driver. The lawsuit describes the drive as terrifying. The lawsuit alleges Dalton was running red lights, crashing into other vehicles, as well as kidnapping, falsely imprisoning, and battering Mellen.
Mellen escaped from the ride by jumping from the vehicle. He sustained injuries during the escape and called 911. Mellen then immediately tried contacting Uber to report Dalton’s unsafe driving to get Uber to deactivate Dalton. But Uber did not deactivate Dalton who was arrested after shooting eight people hours later, the lawsuit said.
The company claimed to have a 24-hour helpline to report dangerous conduct of its drivers but no one from the company could be reached despite repeated attempts. Dalton went on to shoot and kill six people and injured two others.
The now 51-year-old Dalton was sentenced to life in prison in February 2019 for eight felonies related to the shootings. He is currently in prison in Manistee County.
After his arrest, Dalton told police the Uber app on his phone controlled him and made him attack people.