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Country Singer Clare Dunn Says She Was Assaulted By Lyft Driver After Pointing Out He'd Missed Turn

“You’re powerless,” Clare Dunn described after allegedly being attacked by Lyft driver Albert Boakye in Nashville. “You’re basically inside a loaded gun — you have no control over anything.”

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RIDESHARE NIGHTMARES: Safety, Strangers and Sexual Assault
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RIDESHARE NIGHTMARES: Safety, Strangers and Sexual Assault

As children, we are often taught “don’t talk to strangers.” We certainly know not to get in their cars. But rideshare companies have turned that paradigm on its head. With tens of millions of rides a day, rideshare companies boast that 99.9% of rides go without incident. But with so many drivers on the road, day in and day out, that small fraction translates into thousands of painful experiences. This episode examines the darker side of rideshares for some customer and what the industry and regulators can do to combat rideshare nightmares.

A Tennessee Lyft driver who allegedly body slammed country musician Clare Dunn and left her in a ditch earlier this summer has been arrested.

Albert Boakye, 47, is accused of attacking Dunn after arguing with her over a missed turn during a rideshare trip in June, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com

On June 26, Dunn hailed a Lyft with another girlfriend after a night of dinner and cocktails. Boakye, later identified as the driver, picked the pair up in a cream-colored SUV around 12:30 a.m. After dropping off her friend, Dunn said she recalled something felt off.

“I just wanted to go home,” Dunn told Oxygen.com. “I tried to not worry about it. I told myself I was overthinking and trusted that I could trust this person to take me home.”

About a mile from Dunn’s home, Boakye, however, appeared to veer off course, blowing through an intersection he was supposed to turn at, she said. Baokye, she said, quickly became agitated and began yelling at her, after she pointed out the mistake.

“I became instantly afraid — that’s the only turn to go to my home at that point that’s not out of the way,” Dunn described. “He keeps screaming at me and I stand my ground with him. ... We’re barreling towards an interstate and I just knew this isn’t right.”

Clare Dunn Albert Boakye G Pd

Moments later, Boakye abruptly steered the SUV to the side of the road — nearly swiping a mailbox on the sidewalk — and spiraled into a full blown fit of rage, Dunn alleged.

“I knew right then I had to get ready for whatever was going to happen,” Dunn said. “As soon as he slammed that car in park, he hauled ass around that car.”

According to an arrest affidavit, Boakye got out of his vehicle near U.S. Route 70S and allegedly yanked Dunn out of the backseat by her shirt, then grabbed her throat and threw her to the ground.

“He put his other hand behind his hand and he slammed me down into a ditch,” Dunn said. “It felt like being body slammed. My face, my head, and my neck broke my fall.” 

Dunn, who said she feared for her life, managed to dial emergency dispatchers.

“Somewhere in the scuffle I was trying to get a call off to 911,” she said. “They called me back somehow. After I got my bearings after being slammed on the ground I just started screaming.” 

Boakye later fled the scene, authorities said. Dunn suffered multiple bruises and cuts on her head and face, according to police. The country singer said she later ran home barefoot.

On Monday, Dunn shared a graphic image of her injuries stemming from the alleged assault with more than 40,000 followers on her Instagram profile.

“The whole reason to speak out is to warn people that this could happen to me, this could happen to you,” she said.

Boakye was later identified through his Lyft driver profile. However, weeks went by without any arrests; prosecutors say they obtained a subpoena authorizing investigator access to basic driver information from the company about Boakye.  

He was arrested and booked into a Davidson County detention center on Tuesday, according to online jail records. He since posted a $1,000 bond and was released. 

Lyft also confirmed this week that Boakye has been permanently removed from the platform.

“The behavior described is appalling, and we permanently removed the driver from the Lyft platform as soon as we learned of this incident,” a spokesperson for the rideshare giant told Oxygen.com. “We've been in touch with Ms. Dunn to offer our support and are assisting law enforcement with their investigation."

Dunn, who splits her time between recording sessions in Nashville and a ranch in southeast Colorado, said she’ll never rideshare alone ever again.

“You’re powerless,” Dunn said. “You’re basically inside a loaded gun — you have no control over anything. You’re at the mercy of whoever is behind that wheel. I feared for my life. I’m thankful he didn’t break my neck throwing me down in that ditch. I’ve been on a farm and I’ve been bucked off horses ... and I’ve never felt the force I felt with [Boakye].”

Dunn is currently signed to independent Nashville-based record label Big Yellow Dog Music LLC.

Boakye’s next court is scheduled for Aug. 27. He doesn’t appear to have a past criminal history. The 47-year-old driver didn’t immediately respond to Oxygen.com’s request for comment regarding the allegations on Tuesday. Attorney information wasn’t immediately available for him.

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