Cabbie assaulted, chased: Stolen taxi dumped 100km away
TALK about a wild night.
Sunshine Coast CIB detectives are hunting for a man who stole a Suncoast Cabs taxi after jumping in at the Ocean St cab rank in the early hours of this morning.
Detective Sergeant Graham Farlow said the cab had been found in Lutwyche, an inner-Brisbane suburb, after the man had hopped in the cab at Ocean St and requested a fare to Redbank, near Ipswich.
Det Sgt Farlow said the man was the only passenger in the cab and had threatened the driver with physical violence before stealing the taxi.
Police Media say around 12.30am the driver picked the man up from the rank and as they were driving off the passenger asked to be taken to Brisbane.
The driver advised he couldn't take him that far and the man became aggressive.
When the cabbie pulled over on the side of Maroochydore Rd as a result of the aggression the man grabbed the taxi meter and tore it from the roof of the car before grabbing the driver around the neck and "pushing his fist into his face".
The 28-year-old Sunshine Coast driver managed to struggle free and bail out of the vehicle as the passenger chased him down the road for a short distance before returning tothe cab and driving off.
The stolen taxi was abandoned at the intersection of Colton and Norman Avenues in Lutwyche and was found about 2.50am.
The vehicle had been significantly damaged with all four wheels damaged after having been driven on its rims.
The man responsible is described as being Caucasian, aged 20-25, about 175cm tall with a proportionate build and short, brown hair, wearing a grey, short-sleeved shirt with collar, dark-grey long pants and black shoes.
The taxi is a white, 2011 Toyota Prius from Suncoast Cabs.
The driver was not injured and got to a nearby service station where he contacted police.
Police are scouring CCTV and awaiting more footage which they hope will quickly identify the man and they would like to speak with anyone who may have seen the man at Ocean St, the assault on Maroochydore Rd or the taxi driving from Maroochydore to Lutwyche.
Suncoast Cabs general manager Eli ten Dam said the driver was still suffering the effects of the assault.
"He's pretty shaken up," Mr ten Dam said.
Anyone with information about the incident should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.