Thursday, March 30, 2023

Suspect facing charges in attack on Lyft driver

Westland Police have arrested a suspect in the unprovoked stabbing of a 75-year-old Lyft driver which took place March 16.

Westland police responded to a 10 p.m. 911 call from the victim and when officers arrived at the scene near an apartment complex at 31600 Warren Road, found the wounded driver in his vehicle, suffering from multiple stab wounds. Officers and EMTs provided immediate medical aid and the victim was transported to a nearby hospital where he was treated for his injuries.

The victim, 65-year-old James Evans, said he has provided Lyft rides for more than seven years and has provided more than 22,000 rides during that time without any major incident. 

Evans told police he had picked up his attacker at Seven Mile and Hoover and the ride was calm and quiet until they arrived at the Westland apartment complex. He said the man suddenly came at him and stabbed him repeatedly in the neck and wounded him in his arm, hand and thumb.  The retired Navy veteran said he was unable to defend himself as he was strapped in by the vehicle seat belt. 

Evans told reporters he was grateful for the immediate response of the police and fire department.

The suspect, identified as Steffon Mitchell, 26, was arrested within 18 hours of the attack, police reported. 

The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office has charged Mitchell with assault with the intent to murder; assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder by strangulation and assault with a dangerous weapon.

Mitchell was arraigned on the charges at the 18th District Court in Westland March 19, and was given a $50,000 cash bond.

 He was remanded to the Wayne County Jail where he remains in custody. His next court appearance is scheduled for April 6.