'I Was Praying That I Would Survive:' Owasso Lyft Driver Describes Terrifying Alleged Assault
OWASSO, Oklahoma - An Owasso Lyft driver said she's in fear for her safety after a passenger allegedly assaulted her.
"I was praying that I would survive," Stephanie Hopkins told News on 6.
She said it's a ride she will never forget.
"I was just trying to give a passenger a ride home, and that's not what happened," Hopkins said.
Hopkins picked up rider 35-year-old Adam Joseph McKean from Arnie's Bar and Grill Saturday afternoon. But on the app, he was using the false name "Ty." She said he seemed drunk.
"I'm just driving and he's slowly moving closer to where you are, and he starts rubbing the back of my head," Hopkins described.
Hopkins said she grabbed her phone. McKean reportedly told her to keep driving straight and allegedly touched her inappropriately in the groin area and chest.
"He told me he was the boss and I would be listening to him," Hopkins recalled.
That's when Hopkins pushed the "SOS" button on the Lyft app using her navigation. The feature had to transfer the call to three different departments before alerting the Owasso police.
She said McKean put his hand over her mouth to keep her from giving information to the dispatcher.
After over an hour of driving, Owasso police finally stopped the vehicle at 76th and 129th streets where they got Hopkins to safety and arrested McKean.
In a statement Lyft said in part:
"Safety is fundamental to Lyft. What the driver described is frightening, and the rider's access to Lyft has been permanently removed."
McKean is facing charges of kidnapping, sexual battery, being drunk in public, and interrupting an emergency call.
Hopkins said getting behind the wheel will never be the same.
"I have felt so violated. I don't even like being in my car, and I won't be driving - my family is more important to me than trying to drive for extra money. "
Hopkins said she would like to see the SOS feature get faster in alerting the nearest law enforcement agency, and to see ride share companies conduct background checks for passengers.