Suspect pretends to be rideshare driver, sexually assaults woman

The Austin Police Department has released this sketch in hopes the public can help them locate and identify the suspect who sexually assaulted a woman on the night of Sunday, March 19 in Austin, Texas.

According to police, the victim used a rideshare app to hail a ride and got into a white van, believing it was her driver. The suspect pulled over somewhere along Mopac and sexually assaulted her in the back of the van.

On March 19, Austin police say a woman ordered a ride from a ride hailing app to pick her up from the Domain and take her downtown. A white van pulled up. She thought he was her ride so she got in. Soon after driving off, she got a text from her real driver who was waiting at the pickup location.

She was in the wrong car with the wrong person.

“I can see how if you're in a rush you can just jump in the car like that but there are preventative actions that you could take,” said Kellyn Yergensen, who works at the Domain. Austin police say the man pulled over somewhere off Mopac and sexually assaulted her. She did survive and was able to give police a description of the man who she thought was her ride share driver. 

The incident has shaken up some who live, play or work in the domain.

“So scary. That makes me not want to use it. It shows you the car and has a picture of the driver and the driver's name so I try to make sure that's all matching,” said Elizabeth Ogle, who uses ride share apps.

Police describe the suspect as a 30 to 40 year old black man, 5'10 ,180 pounds with an athletic build.

They say he also had a bald head and brown eyes.

If you have any information, you are urged to call APD immediately at (512) 974-5230.

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