A taxi driver was robbed at knifepoint early Saturday by a man who then stole her vehicle, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.

The incident occurred at about 1:10 a.m. in the 200 block of Old Mill Road near Santa Barbara, sheriff’s spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said.

“The male suspect had hailed a cab on State Street in downtown Santa Barbara and directed the female taxi driver to turn onto Old Mill Road and stop in the 200 block,” Hoover said. “The suspect then put a knife to the back of the victim’s neck and demanded cash.”

She said the taxi driver turned over an undisclosed amount of money and exited the cab, and the suspect drove away in the vehicle.

“After he left, the victim yelled for help and a citizen in the area heard her and called 9-1-1,” Hoover said.

Deputies located the abandoned taxi about 30 minutes later in the parking lot outside Albertsons supermarket at 7127 Hollister Ave. in Goleta, Hoover said.

She said a search of the area with the assistance of a K-9 team did not turn up any sign of the suspect, who was described as wearing all black clothing and speaking with a Middle Eastern accent.

Anyone with information that would assist investigators in this case is asked to call the Sheriff’s Department at 805.683.2724, or leave an anonymous tip at 805.681.4171.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at tbolton@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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Tom Bolton, Noozhawk Executive Editor

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at tbolton@noozhawk.com.