A Santa Maria Uber driver was arrested this week for allegedly sexually assaulting a customer in April, according to the Santa Maria Police Department.
“The victim told detectives that she had an Uber driver pick her up and drive her to a confidential location in Santa Maria,” said Lt. Paul Van Meel. “After the transportation was completed, the victim said, the driver took her to another location where he sexually assaulted her.”
Investigators eventually determined that the suspect in the case was Shadi Abdul Aziz, 37, Van Meel said.
A warrant was issued for Aziz’s arrest, and last week agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement took him into custody at the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego.
Aziz was brought back to Santa Barbara County Jail, where he was booked on suspicion of sexual assault, Van Meel said.
His bail was set at $1 million.
Aziz faces felony charges of rape of a drugged victim and sexual battery, according to Santa Barbara County Superior Court documents. He was ordered to return to court May 30.
Based on the circumstances surrounding this investigation, detectives believe there may be other victims or witnesses to this or similar crimes, Van Meel said.
Anyone with information on this crime or related crimes is requested to call Detective Mathew Silver at 805.928.3781 x1346.