Uber Settles Lawsuit Over Driver Sexual Assault Claims

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Uber Technologies Inc. settled a lawsuit filed by two women who sought to hold the company responsible for alleged sexual assaults by drivers.

Terms of the accord weren’t disclosed in court papers. The settlement follows a federal judge’s ruling six months ago rejecting the company’s argument that it couldn’t be blamed for sexual attacks by drivers, who it classifies as contractors rather than employees.

A lawyer for the women said the May decision marked first time a court has said Uber can’t legally distance itself from a driver’s misconduct by asserting that an incident with a passenger occurred when the ride-hailing app was turned off.

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston in San Francisco dismissed the case Thursday.

Uber spokesman Matt Kallman declined to comment on the settlement. Jeanne Christensen, the lawyer for the women, didn’t immediately respond to phone and e-mail messages seeking comment.

A woman identified in the case as Jane Doe 1 alleged that in February 2015 in Boston, her Uber driver waited until after he’d dropped off her friend to assault her before she escaped. A second woman, Jane Doe 2, claimed that when she hailed a ride in Charleston, South Carolina, in August 2015, the driver detoured from the route to her home so he could “viciously rape her.”

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