The FBI Springfield Office and Illinois State Police, along with the United States Attorney’s Office–Southern District of Illinois are warning of rideshare-related carjacking incidents in the state.
Law enforcement has reported 7 carjacking incidents targeting rideshare drivers since late June in the East St. Louis area. One was an attempted carjacking, and another resulted in a homicide.
The FBI in Springfield says criminals are using fake profiles to conceal their identity when requesting pick-ups through rideshares like Uber and Lyft. When the driver arrives, their car is stolen and in some instances the victim’s cell phone and/or wallet is also stolen. The drivers are then left stranded in an unknown or unfamiliar location and can possibly be re-victimized.
Law enforcement is advising rideshare drivers to verify and screen drivers and not to accept third-party requests. Rideshare drivers and passengers are also asked to be aware of your surroundings at all times, and when possible, let friends or a family member know your whereabouts at all times.
The public is encouraged to report any suspicious activity to law enforcement immediately. Call FBI Springfield at 217-522-9675 or if immediate assistance is needed, dial 9-1-1.