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Taxi driver accused of abduction after locking cab doors; 3 customers jump from moving cab

A taxi driver from Bethesda is in jail in Virginia after being accused of locking three women inside his vehicle and refusing to let them out after they said they couldn’t pay.

Prince William County Police arrested 30-year-old Muzemil Denbel Awel in Woodbridge Saturday and charged him with three counts of abduction.

According to police, early Saturday morning, three women aged 32, 29 and 22, hailed Awel’s vehicle in D.C. and asked him to drive more than 30 miles to Nassau Drive, which is in a neighborhood off Dale Boulevard.

After the taxi arrived, police say the women got into an argument with Awel about how much money they owed. They eventually told him they couldn’t pay the fare.

After that, police say Awel locked the doors and drove away, refusing to let the women out.

One of them called a family member who began following the taxi. Police say about ten minutes later, the victims were able to get one of the back doors unlocked and they jumped out of the vehicle while it was still moving.

Police say the women then got into the family members car and it continued following the taxi.

Awel stopped at a business near the intersection of Mapledale Avenue and Dale Boulevard. Police arrived and placed Awel under arrest.

On Monday, police said Awel was in jail on no bond with a court date scheduled for July 13.

A man who answered the door at Awel’s Bethesda address Monday night said he wasn’t sure what had happened and wanted to find out more before saying anything on Awel’s behalf.


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