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Lyft Driver Accused of Assault for Dispute over Money with Two Passengers

A man who provided services as a Lyft driver was in an altercation with two passengers early Sunday morning leading to allegations that he threatened the pair and wielded a metal pipe with intent to assault them.

A Boston man and his girlfriend were given a ride by a Lyft driver and arrived at their destination just before 1:00am on Sunday. After they paid the driver and he had departed the woman noticed that she left her cell phone inside of the car. The man called the driver back explaining the situation and requested he return the phone to them at the location he had dropped them off. The couple offered the driver $30 for his trouble.

The Lyft driver, identified as Jesse Colon, agreed to bring the phone back to the couple for the agreed upon fee. According to police, when Colon arrived to return the phone and collect his payment the three engaged in a disagreement concerning payment.

The couple claimed that Colon demanded they give him more money than they had agreed upon and became abusive when they refused to comply. Colon returned to his vehicle and retrieved a metal pipe which he held as he allegedly grabbed the woman by the throat and made verbal threats.

The woman’s boyfriend intervened and forced Colon to let go of her throat. The couple then notified the authorities and reported the incident.

Police arrived at the scene and noticed red marks on the woman’s neck which appeared to coincide with the couple’s account of the events. A witness to the fight also corroborated their allegations.

45-year-old Colon was arrested and charged with assault and battery and assault with a dangerous weapon. He was released after paying the ordered bail on Sunday morning, and his arraignment is scheduled for Tuesday at the Boston Municipal Court.

Lyft released a statement expressing their concern over the situation, and confirmed that they have deactivated Colon from driving with their service.

Colon responded to the charged by announcing that he was not the cause of the fight with the couple. He stated that he arrived to return the cell phone to the customers, and instead of the agreed upon $30 they threw a few dollars at him and told him to leave. He asserted that he pulled the pipe from his vehicle to protect himself, and plans to show footage from his dash cam which proves his claims.

If you or someone you love is suspected of assault, contact Orange County criminal defense lawyer Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 for a consultation now.