Cab driver shot 3 times, recovering

A cab driver is recovering after being shot three times Sunday morning in northwest Charlotte, police said.

The driver, from the Universal Taxi Cab Co., picked up a fare on Rowan Street, near Freedom Drive, around 6:30 a.m. and headed toward Esther Lane nearby, according to a police report. When he arrived, a man approached his cab and shot him in the arm, side and leg in what police are calling a robbery attempt.

Word of Sunday's shooting spread quickly among cab drivers, said Scott Hardee of Diamond Cab Co., who's been in the business nearly 30 years. Most drivers know their business is a dangerous one, he said.

“They're told it's not always a glamorous job,” said Hardee, who said he was robbed, blindfolded and tied up in his cab several years ago.

At Diamond Cab, veteran drivers are assigned to night shifts, while newer drivers work during the day and make runs to and from the airport, he said.

“Otherwise,” Hardee said, “the new guys would never last.”

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Earl Mathis said Sunday afternoon he did not have additional details about the latest attack. He did not release the driver's name or other information about the suspect.

The cab driver was transported to Carolinas Medical Center and will be treated and released without requiring surgery, according to the police report.

At Universal, word about their co-worker was just getting around to some employees Sunday afternoon, said a dispatcher, who declined to give her name.

The woman said she was the victim of a shooting on the job about a decade ago and that the latest incident put cab company employees on edge.

“I'm concerned,” she said. “Basically, we do the best we can.”