Driver arrested after woman knocked unconscious from jumping out of rideshare in Cairo

Ahram Online , Sunday 25 Feb 2024

An Egyptian woman was knocked unconscious and remains in the hospital after jumping from a moving car affiliated with a popular ride-hailing app, while the incident is still under investigation by the prosecution.

File photo: Cars drive down a street in the Egyptian capital Cairo. AP


The woman booked a ride from New Cairo’s upscale Madinaty neighbourhood to the Fifth Settlement on Wednesday evening.

However, just ten minutes into the nearly 30-minute trip, she jumped out of the car as it was moving at high speed on the Suez Road to escape what she thought was a kidnapping attempt, according to her mother, in comments on Saturday night to MBC Masr TV satellite channel.

The woman rolled along the road until she hit a sidewalk, sustaining several injuries. She was rushed to the hospital by a passerby who witnessed the incident, the hospital told her mother. 

Habiba is suffering from a brain hemorrhage and is still unconscious in an intensive care unit, where she is on a ventilator, her mother said.

The mother said she spoke to her daughter once the latter got into the car but was unable to hear her well because the driver was playing music.

The mother said she overheard the driver having a phone conversation of his own in which he was “shouting.” 

“I told her to get out of the car, but she told me ‘I will … reassure you when I arrive.’”

The mother said she received a phone call later in the day informing her daughter had been hospitalized.

In an official statement on Saturday, the Ministry of Interior said they are investigating the incident. 

Eyewitnesses reported that she feared being "harassed," according to the statement. 

The ministry said the driver was arrested and interrogated.

The driver denied all wrongdoing, saying he was surprised by the woman’s sudden jump and fled the scene to avoid getting in trouble, the statement added. 

In response, the driver's sister stated that her brother did nothing wrong, emphasizing that there was no conversation between him and the woman.

“After they moved, my brother felt that his clothes smelled of cigarettes … so, he took out a bottle of perfume, and suddenly the girl threw herself out of the car,” she said in TV comments with MBC Masr TV satellite channel on Sunday night.

She highlighted that the prosecution had tested the perfume bottle he used and confirmed that it did not contain any narcotic substances.

The sister believed that the incident might have been a misunderstanding, saying: “No one kidnaps someone in his own car.”

The sister expressed her hope for the woman's swift recovery, as her testimony would help exonerate her brother.

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