What to Know
- Uber driver Raquel Spohn Wehber, 58, was stabbed to death by a teenage passenger after a ride in San Diego's National City community on July 6, 2021
- The teen -- covered in blood -- ran away from the scene but witnesses led officers to her and she was arrested
- Uber said the ride from the victim had been requested by an adult with an Uber account
A teenage passenger suspected of stabbing and killing an Uber driver in San Diego's National City area is set to appear in court for the first time Friday. The girl was booked into the San Diego Juvenile Detention Center earlier this week on one count of murder.
The teen suspect, whom police have described only as being under 18 years old, is due to be arraigned in a morning appearance at San Diego Juvenile Court. Due to her age, her name has not been released by investigators.
The teen is accused in the murder of Raquel Spohn Wehber, 58, a mother and grandmother from Tijuana, Mexico, who worked as a driver for Uber. Spohn Wehber had given the girl a ride in San Diego's National City area on the afternoon of July 6. After the ride, the National City Police Department said the teen stabbed Spohn Wehber multiple times, killing her.
Spohn Wehber was loved by many.
The Killing of the Uber Driver
On July 6, at around 3 p.m., officers with the National City Police Department were called to South Lanoitan Avenue to investigate a report of an assault. When police arrived, they found Spohn Wehber in the driver's seat of a car suffering from multiple stab wounds.
Uber told NBC 7 that Spohn Wehber was working for the rideshare company at the time of her killing. She had just completed a ride and was dropping off her passenger at South Lanoitan Avenue, near 18th Street, when she was stabbed to death.
“The senseless and brutal crime that took the life of Raquel Spohn Wehber is heartbreaking and our thoughts are with her family. We stand ready to work with law enforcement on their investigation," an Uber spokesperson told NBC 7.
Uber said they will be reaching out to Spohn Wehber's family to offer their condolences and support.
Witnesses told police they had seen a young woman running away from Spohn Wehber's car.
Officers began searching for that person and soon, they found a teenager who matched the descriptions from witnesses. The NCPD said the teen "had blood all over her."
She was taken into custody on suspicion of the deadly stabbing of the Uber driver.
Meanwhile, police found a knife -- the weapon used in the deadly stabbing -- inside the car where Spohn Wehber was found.
Spohn Wehber died at the scene.
The silver Nissan Sedan she had been driving had an Uber sticker on its window. The rideshare company would later confirm the victim was a driver for Uber and had been working at the time of the stabbing.
Uber told NBC 7 the ride from Spohn Wehber was requested by an adult since underage passengers are not allowed to use the rideshare service. The company said the account holder who requested the ride had been banned from the platform.
As of Thursday morning, NCPD detectives said they were in the process of obtaining a search warrant for the Uber account used to request the deadly ride.
Police have not released further details about the motive or what led to the deadly stabbing of the Uber driver. It is unknown if the suspect and Spohn Wehber were acquaintances.
Anyone with information on this case can reach out to the NCPD at (619) 336-4411.
Relying on Witnesses
National City police credit witnesses for helping to quickly identify the teenage suspect and leading officers to her. She left a trail of blood that officers followed to a mobile home just a few blocks away, where she was hiding.
Witnesses Christian Warren and his girlfriend Ashley Chavez were watching a movie in their car parked on the street when the scene unfolded just steps behind them.
"Yeah, we were pretty nervous," Warren said. "We were like, 'What's going on?'"
What Chavez saw next was chilling.
"I looked right here in my review mirror and the cop was just pulling the lady out of the car. Her shirt was just full of blood," she said. "I was in shock. I have never seen anything like that."
Police said the victim's sedan hit a parked car in front of it and prompted some neighbors to come outside for a look.
They then called the police and the grisly scene unfolded.
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