A 76-year-old Uber and Lyft driver was carjacked, and now the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office is asking for help finding the man they say helped.
Samuel Escamilla, 26, of Fresno, is 5 feet 8 inches, 160 pounds, with brown eyes and hair, said sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti. He has a tattoo of the Air Jordan Jumpman logo on his inner right forearm and usually has a mustache and goatee. He had long hair but may have cut it.
Botti said Escamilla and Elizabeth Sage, 30, allegedly carjacked a man after getting him to agree to a cash payment to take them to a rural area south of Fowler.
Sage was found and arrested on July 31 on suspicion of carjacking, robbery and assault with a deadly weapon, said Botti. Her bail is set at $217,500.
The two allegedly approached the man in a shopping center at First Street and McKinley Avenue in Fresno on July 24. He told them he worked as a driver for Uber and Lyft and Escamilla, and Sage took his contact information to arrange for a ride later in the day.
Sage allegedly called the man later and he picked the two up near First Street and Princeton Avenue around 3:30 p.m. Escamilla and Sage allegedly asked the man to take them to Fowler and Dinuba avenues, said Botti.
When they arrived, the man pulled over, thinking they were lost. That’s when Sage and Escamilla allegedly told him it was a robbery and demanded his car keys, wallet and phone.
The man turned off the car, threw his keys out of the window into a vineyard and began to run away, Botti said. Escamilla allegedly chased and tackled him and they both held a knife to him, threatening to hurt him.
They found the keys in the dirt and drove away in the man’s 2016 Jeep Cherokee, Botti said.
The man walked to a nearby home and called for help. Two days later, the Cherokee was found in an orchard at Clovis and Huntsman avenues, a few miles away, said Botti.
A surveillance video obtained by detectives shows Escamilla shopping at a Walmart, with his hair either tucked into a hat or cut shorter, Botti said.
Botti said drivers and passengers using ridesharing services should always use the app to ensure there will be a digital record of the transaction.