AURORA (CBS) — Nothing seemed out of the ordinary early Thursday when an Aurora cab driver took the call to pick up a man at a Naperville gas station.
The 39-year-old driver, who has been in the cab business for about three years, wasn’t leery at all about the 4:45 a.m. pick-up, he said.
The 33-year-old male passenger simply asked to be driven to downtown Aurora, but changed his mind. Instead, he gave the Eagle Taxi Company driver street-by-street directions toward his new destination. As they approached Spring Street and North Fourth Street in Aurora things quickly went south.
“It happened so fast,” the driver, who asked his name not be used, told the Aurora Beacon-News Friday as he recovered from stab wounds to the neck.
The passenger asked him to pull over, and then reached around from behind with knife, plunging it into the driver’s neck. He didn’t demand money, instead, he told the driver he “had a bad day.”
The driver quickly jumped out of the cab — without a chance to place it in park — and when he did, the suspect hopped up front and took the wheel. A witness then called 911.
Maurice A. Martin of the 700 block of Inland Circle was charged Friday with aggravated vehicular hijacking, vehicular hijacking, aggravated battery, aggravated fleeing and eluding police, and possession of a stolen motor vehicle.
The suspect was on the lam for nearly 12 hours in the stolen cab before an off-duty officer spotted him near Route 59 and Butterfield Road around 5:06 p.m. Thursday.
The officer followed the cab until on-duty officers could join the pursuit. After a stop stick destroyed one of the cab’s tires, the suspect pulled to the side of the road at Walter Avenue and Ohio Street. Police said he was taken into custody without incident.
The driver was in the hospital for a couple hours, and is back on the road.
“I have never seen anything like this,” he said.
<em>(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2013. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)</em>