On Tuesday October 16th, a Detroit cab driver was shot and killed outside a Mobil gas station located at Conner Street and Harper Avenue on Detroit’s east side; this is the second cab driver to be killed in Detroit in less than 30 days. The alleged victim, Jawan McQueen, was identified by relatives but not named by police. News reports claim that McQueen was parked outside the gas station just after 4 a.m. when he was approached by two men who came from behind the station and began firing at the cab.
Neither of the two suspects have been arrested, but police believe that McQueen may have injured one of the men as he fired back at the two men from the cab before he was shot.
Jermaine Thomas, McQueen’s brother, told news reporters that McQueen, who lived in Roseville, had been driving a cab for less than a year. Three weeks ago another cab driver was killed in Detroit. According to Matt Oddy, manager of Checker Cab, two others have been wounded recently in the course of their job duties. Oddy said that this is a city-wide issue, and a problem that must be addressed.
Cab drivers who are dispatched by Checker Cab Company generally drive their own vehicles, or work for other cab owners. According to spokeswoman Kelly Rossman-McKinney, about 550 southeast Michigan independent drivers are dispatched by the company.
Understandably, cab drivers in the Detroit area have become very nervous due to the recent increase in violence against cabbies. Since McQueen’s death, many Metro Detroit cab drivers have complained that efforts to ensure the safety of drivers by authorities is lacking. In fact, Allen Powell, a Checker Cab driver, said that if drivers park their vehicles on main streets that are well-lit, they are likely to be harassed by police or even ticketed.
McQueen did have a concealed weapons permit, although Checker Cab says that they do not influence those with permits one way or the other when it comes to carrying a firearm on the job.
It is apparent that there is a risk for cab drivers in Detroit, and that the overall crime rate is much higher than anyone would like. However, Michigan criminal defense lawyers know that those convicted for crimes such as homicide or murder face extremely harsh penalties.
If you have been arrested for homicide, murder or any violent offense, consult with a competent and aggressive Michigan murder defense lawyer at once; time is of the essence in these types of situations.