Boston Police report:
Mark Cohen, a 28 year employee of the Boston Police Department and Director of the Hackney Unit, has been placed on paid administrative leave as a result of an internal complaint.
These allegations bring into question the overall management of the Hackney Unit. Accordingly, until a full review of the Hackney Unit is completed, Cohen will remain on leave.
Taxi lawsuit: Uber a crime syndicate that hates poor people and cancer patients and puts public safety at riskBy adamg - 4/4/13 - 8:18 am
A lawsuit by key members of the local taxi industry against upstart Uber is now a federal matter - San Franisco-based Uber yesterday had the suit transferred from state court to US District Court in Boston.
In the suit, Boston Cab Dispatch and EJT Management charge Uber, which lets customers use a smart-phone app to arrange a ride, violates state law, which requires taxis in Boston to carry medallions.
The companies charge Uber lets drivers refuse rides to certain neighborhoods. As East Boston residents know, city law prohibits medallion drivers from refusing rides there.
The Globe continues its look at the local taxi industry with some depressing news for anybody who gets injured by or in a local cab.
Bribery, shortchanging and a city government that doesn't care, the Globe reports.
When the bars close down, cabbies pull the no-cash, no-ride trick, apparently. A discussion going on on Twitter:
Keith Richard snapped this photo of the bus he'd been on and a taxi in Kendall Square around 5:45 p.m.:
This cab just pulled in front of the CT2 I was riding at Kendall. Bus braked, we all went flying.
Alex Wheeler, also on the bus, reported no injuries, but, naturally, rush-hour traffic quickly backed up as a result.
A company that offers something like a hitchhiker app launches today in the Boston area. SideCar, already available in several cities, lets users find people going their way - people the company says have been vetted to weed out serial killers and the like.
There's a fee involved, of course, which will no doubt catch the attention of the local medallion-cab company, whose traditional monopoly on fee-based car rides is already under assault by online reservation services such as Uber and Hailo.
Paul Levy is betting Boston will side with the medallion owners.
The Boston Business Journal reports.
Updated Thursday morning.
The Dorchester Reporter reports prominent Boston lawyer William McDermott was struck and killed by an SUV as he tried to walk across Day Boulevard at L Street in South Boston Wednesday evening.
The Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports McDermott was hit by a Ranger Rover driven by a 33-year-old South Boston man:
State Police responded to the scene at about 7:30 after the operator called 911; he remained at the scene and did not show signs of intoxication. The investigation will entail a reconstruction of the crash by the State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section and a search for surveillance cameras and other evidence by detectives. No charges have been brought as of this morning but interviews are ongoing and the probe remains very active at this hour.
Five Massport workers were arrested today on charges they took bribes from cab drivers seeking to evade the airport's normal queue for passengers, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office, State Police and Massport announced.
Officials say the five "cab starters" let cabbies who slipped them $20 to $40 jump ahead of other drivers - although they add some of the five accepted scratch tickets, cigarettes and other items instead of money:
East Boston resident tired of cabbies illegally charging tunnel fee - especially when they don't take the tunnelBy adamg - 12/18/12 - 8:28 am
East Boston News posts a complaint from Meridian Street about all the Logan cabs that scurry along it now:
We residents of East Boston that live on and around Meridian Street, East Boston get to hear, see, smell, breath and dodge the steady stream of hundreds of empty Logan taxis that bless our streets again this morning and all day long. But that's O.K. as the multi-million dollar Coughlin Bypass Road that these Logan taxis are supposed to be using gets to rest so us East Boston resident taxpayers can have a nice quiet Sunday morning. Not!
Boston Police are looking for two guys who robbed a cab driver at gunpoint around 11:50 p.m. on Copeland Street. The cab hit several cars before coming to a stop.
CraigglesofDoom presents us with today's mystery: What was a New York City cab doing in the South End today?
If you dial the number (starting with 617) on the cab on this postcard from sometime between 1930 and 1945, you'll be connected to Town Taxi - which still uses the same basic logo, right down to the slanted Ts. One wonders, however, if they would honor the 30-cents offer.
Hail, no: Rider says online cab reservation services have their problems, but both beat the old way of grabbing a cabBy adamg - 10/19/12 - 8:12 am
Dave Levy compares Uber and arriviste Hailo:
As an end-user, I'll likely go back and forth depending on wait times; the ability to choose and have multiple options only makes transportation around Boston better.
The Daily Free Press reports on a Saturday incident involving a cab driver who held a woman's bags hostage while he forced her to pay twice for her ride from the airport:
After she swiped her card and accepted the payment, a message on the machine thanked her for the payment.
The driver said the payment had not gone through and insisted that she make the payment again. The driver then got in the back seat with the victim and made her swipe her card under the flat rate. The victim said the first payment was $46.10 and the second payment was $40.10. The driver gave the victim a receipt for the second payment, threw her luggage onto the sidewalk and then drove away.
An aggravated citizen reports:
I took a cab from my home is roslindale to Logan arriving at 5am. I tried to pay w. credit card but the driver insisted the system wouldn't work until 7. Taxi 592 forest hills independent taxi service. I have been in too many Boston cabs where "the system isn't working" for credit cards.
The state Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, which oversees the now infamous standards division, said today the division will issue an operating certificate to Uber now that it has learned a national standards body is evaluating GPS-based metering systems like the one Uber uses.
The office's statement came just a couple of hours after Gov. Patrick's spokesman vowed to get Uber back in the state's good graces, a couple weeks after the division had ruled Uber's GPS system illegal - following a sting operation set up by the city of Cambridge.
On the one hand: The sort of start-uppy people the city wants to attract to South Boston love the idea of Uber - which lets users reserve a cab-like car online. On the other hand: Cab drivers and owners are already pissed off about everything from having to take credit cards (which Uber does) to the loss of business to gypsy limos.
Uber, meanwhile, vows to kick what it says is antiquated state-regulatory ass and not shut down following a sting operation in Cambridge (Cambridge? Yes, Cambridge) that led to the state harrumphing.
You can't just show up at mom's on Mother's Day without some flowers, even if you have just carjacked a cabBy adamg - 5/14/12 - 11:56 am
Boston Police report arresting a couple of alleged sad sacks for carjacking a cab in City Square last night.
Police say one of the men jumped behind the wheel but managed to get only a short distance down Devens Street before colliding with two parked cars. The other man, police say, then ran up to the cab because in all the commotion, he'd forgotten to grab a "floral arrangement consisting of orange, yellow and red flowers" he'd brought with him.
Police say the two men, one wearing a Bruins T-shirt, the other a Celtics T, decided around 6 p.m. that rather than paying their fare, they'd hold up the cab driver.