BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Taxi drivers become targets. Police are looking into whether a string of armed robberies of cab drivers may be connected.
Baltimore City police are investigating three taxi cab robberies that occurred within hours of each other Monday morning.
Early Monday morning, between 4 and 7 a.m., two robbers who claimed to have a gun, held up three different drivers. Investigators believe the suspects were driving a black car.
The first incident occurred in the 200 block of South Conkling Street around 4 a.m. The second incident happened around 5 a.m. at the intersection of East and Eastern Avenue. The third incident occurred before 7 a.m. in the 500 block of Park Avenue.
Local cab drivers are on edge after a string of frightening robberies, after three of their colleagues were targeted in just a three hour period.
“I ‘d be very leery. I’m very well aware of who I pick up,” says taxi driver Tina Blum.
“Every day I leave out the house I pray that I make it back home,” says taxi driver Larry Wallace.
“It’s particularly troubling because taxi cabs appear to be targeted in these robberies,” says Lt. Jarron Jackson, with Baltimore City Police.
“If they’re following you in your car, that’s the kind of thing we have to worry about now,” says Blum.
Police are now investigating whether all of the robberies could be connected.
“The descriptions of the suspects and description of the suspect vehicle are very similar,” says Lt. Jackson.
Cab driver Larry Wallace says he was also targeted last night by teens who threw rocks and cracked his taxi window.
“They were robbing people, throwing rocks at people. It’s sad,” says Wallace.
Local cab associations are asking drivers to take precaution.
In a statement to WJZ, Yellow/Checker Cab spokesman Dwight Kines said, “These days the majority of taxi transactions are done electronically or by voucher, so most people realize that cab drivers carry very little cash.”
“However, as a result of this morning’s robberies, we are broadcasting constant warnings to our fleet to keep them alert,” says Kines.
The taxi cab drivers were not injured during the robberies and no passengers were inside the vehicles at the time. Still, fellow drivers are disheartened.
“It’s not right for these people out here to do this to us. We’re out here trying to make it,” says Blum. And they want those robbers off the streets.
Some cab companies say their drivers carry very little cash because most transactions are done with credit card. Police are asking anyone who may have witnessed anything, or any other cab drivers who may have fallen victim to come forward. Anyone with information is asked to call Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7Lockup.