Uber driver brutally attacked by 2 men in California on New Year's Day

KABC logo
Wednesday, January 7, 2015
Uber driver attacked by 2 men
An Uber driver was attacked by two men after picking them up from a New Year's party in Long Beach. He suffered multiple injuries, and his jaw is wired shut.

SIGNAL HILL, Calif. -- An Uber driver speaks out after being brutally attacked by two men he picked up at a New Year's Eve party in Long Beach.

The driver, Gilbert Wilburn, suffered multiple injuries, including a broken jaw. He feared the attack would cost him his life.

"When they had me down I was yelling, 'Help me! Help me,'" he said.

Luckily, a Good Samaritan heard his cries. She said Wilburn was "absolutely terrified."

The two male passengers ran to a nearby apartment building and were quickly identified by the officers. But then, according to Signal Hill police, the story takes a weird twist.

Because Wilburn's jaw was broken, he could not tell the officers what happened and the officers could not arrest the passengers. Now, investigators must uncover more evidence of what exactly happened to file a case identifying Wilburn as the victim.

"He's obviously been injured, that's a concern, but we want to do a fair and full investigation and not leave stones unturned," said Signal Hill Chief Michael Lang.

Wilburn's wife said her husband's injuries speak for themselves.

"The other person who forced my husband's arm, telling him, 'No you're going to stay down.' That's intent. That's intent, it is intent to kill, intent to aggrieve bodily harm," she said.

She added that she is grateful that someone was around to help her husband.

Wilburn said the riders said they were the one who had summoned him through the Uber application on a smartphone, but the men had lied. When he learned the truth, he said he still took them home as his first good deed for 2015.

One of the passengers was drunk and appeared to be getting sick, Wilburn said. He helped the person out of the car and then he was pushed.

Wilburn and the witness said they want a speedy arrest.

Report a Typo