Drive around the District and it’s easy to see—-cab drivers like hanging out at gas stations. For two cabbies, though, their passion for gas station chitchat could lead to the end of their careers.
Drivers Sharanjit Singh and Ephream Esheterom had their licenses suspended indefinitely today by the D.C. Taxicab Commission, all because they wouldn’t leave a gas station pump (and also allegedly shoved a guy).
Trouble began around 9 p.m. last Friday, according to commission spokesman Neville Waters. Singh and Esheterom were hanging out at a gas pump at a station at 22nd and M Streets NW. But when another person at the station asked them to move so he could fill up, the cabbies refused. “They were having a conversation and didn’t want to move,” says Waters.
The would-be gas station customer asked the manager for help, but the cab drivers still refused to leave, according to Waters. When the unlucky customer pulled out an iPhone to start recording the drivers, the situation escalated, with the drivers allegedly shoving and pushing him in an attempt to get the phone. Eventually, the police arrived and arrested the two drivers. “I think it seemed fairly obvious who was the victim,” says Waters.
Both drivers have been charged with simple assault. If they’re found guilty, Waters says, their license suspension could become permanent.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery