An Uber driver in the United States charged with murder following a shooting spree in Michigan on Saturday had a favourable rating from customers according to the ride-sharing firm.
Married father-of-two John Dalton, 45, is charged with six counts of murder following the attacks in Kalamazoo, which occurred over the course of more than four hours.
Chillingly, the man picked up Uber passengers in the hours between the incidents. One such customer even jokingly quizzed Dalton, who has since admitted to carrying out the attacks, on whether he was the shooter.
During a conference call on Monday, a "devastated" Uber revealed Dalton had a 4.73 (out of 5) rating from users of the service and had racked up over 100 rides as a driver (via TechCrunch).
The firm’s chief security officer Joe Sullivan said Dalton had received “favourable feedback” from users after passing Uber’s background check.
During the call, Uber reiterated that Dalton had no prior criminal record and no background check could have predicted such a tragedy.
Sullivan also mentioned that a fingerprint check wouldn’t have helped, something Uber has been criticised for not requiring before approving drivers. Sullivan said the company's policies are unlikely to change as a result of the incident.
"We’re deeply committed to the safety of everyone on our platform we have a clear policy that prohibits firearms in the vehicle,” he said. “I don’t think that we will change our screening processes of Uber drivers as a result of this incident.”
The attack comes at a time when Uber is fighting allegations around the world that its service puts passengers at risk.
The Who’s Driving You? website keeps tabs on the number of assaults, sexual assaults and kidnappings as well as deaths caused by accidents.
It also highlights reports of drivers with past criminal histories, driving under the influence and imposters looking to lure passengers into cars. The list is extensive.
In a statement on Monday Uber had said: “We are horrified and heartbroken at the senseless violence in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Our hearts and prayers are with the families of the victims of this devastating crime and those recovering from injuries. We have reached out to the police to help with their investigation in any way that we can.”