Photo: Gabrele A. Amare
BERKELEY — A former Uber driver is accused of kidnapping customers because he wanted to have sexual intercourse with them. The suspect was arrested in May and he remains behind bars.
The driver, identified as Gabrele A. Amare, 23 of Oakland, faces three felony charges involving two women. However, the suspect may have menaced more women and authorities are continuing with this investigation.
Amare was arrested for allegedly kidnapping two women who arranged for transportation with him. The incidents involved two separate fares tracked online by Uber.
In one instance, a woman jumped out of a moving car to escape from the rideshare driver. The victim ran away to a gas station for help. She later received medical treatment for abrasions on her ankle and elbow.
A second woman threatened to break the car window and called 911, before the driver let her go. She told the police dispatcher that she was being held against her will.
The accused driver tried to convince both women to have sexual relations with him. They declined his offer. Then he allegedly refused to allow them to leave immediately.
The victims told police the driver locked the car doors, accelerated and sped through red lights. One woman reported that the driver started touching her thighs despite her protests.
Berkeley police arrested Amare not far from the city limits with Oakland. Amare was booked into Santa Rita Jail, where he is being held with bond denied.
Amare is charged with two counts of kidnapping for sex, and sexual battery by restraint. His pretrial court hearing is scheduled for June 26.
Anyone with information about the suspect can call the sex crimes unit at Berkeley PD. The number is 510-981-5717.