D.C. police are investigating a spate of taxicab robberies that officials believe may be related.
According to police, three similar incidents targeting cabdrivers occurred overnight Wednesday and Thursday in Northeast Washington.
The first robbery happened early Wednesday morning, around 1:25 a.m., as a cabdriver was dropping off a passenger at the corner of Third Street and Rhode Island Avenue NE. The passenger robbed the driver, taking a phone and cash before fleeing towards Bryant Street NE.
That evening, around 10:30 p.m., a cabdriver was robbed while dropping off a passenger in the 600 block of Rhode Island Avenue NE. The passenger took a cell phone and ear piece. He was reportedly seen heading north on the Metropolitan Bike Trail, police said.
The third incident took place around 12:55 a.m. Thursday, when a passenger attempted to rob a driver while heading to the intersection of 3rd and Evarts streets. Police said the cabdriver continued to drive, then slowed down, and the passenger got out without taking anything. The suspect fled north on 3rd Street NE, police said.
Police described the suspect in all three incidents as a thin black man, about 5’5” tall and 120 lbs, with a dark complexion.
Cabdriver robberies are not unheard of in the District. In the fall of 2011, police received at least 11 reports of taxicab robberies and carjackings. In February, a D.C. man was sentenced to 30 years in prison for a string of armed robberies of cabdrivers in 2009. Earlier this month, a man robbed a cabdriver at gunpoint in Northwest D.C.
Police did not say if the suspect in this week’s robberies had a weapon or if the cabdrivers were injured in any of the robberies.
Anyone with information about these or similar incidents, or about the suspect, can call police at 202-727-9099 or text a tip to 50411.