UP student suing Broadway Cab after being sexually assaulted by driver in 2015

By Clare Duffy | February 13, 2017 8:50pm

A University of Portland student is suing Broadway Cab after she was sexually assaulted by one of the company's taxi drivers in February 2015.

The $4.75 million lawsuit was filed last week and alleges that the company knew that the driver, Hossein Tajipour, had prior sexual misconduct while on the job at the time the student, then 20, was assaulted. 

"Driver had two prior reported incidents involving police questioning him about taking advantage of women in his taxi cab while working," the lawsuit reads. The two previous incidents cited occurred in 2010 and 1997. The suit states that Broadway Cab was informed of these incidents but "failed" to fire the driver.

On the night of Feb. 15, the student was intoxicated and leaving a house party during the early morning hours, but had become lost and was without a jacket or functional cell phone. She hailed Tajipour's cab in hopes of getting a ride home, but he drove her around the industrial area of North Portland for about half an hour before groping her and forcing her to perform oral sex before she could escape.

The suit reports Tajipour, 72, told her: "This is what it takes to get home."

Tajipour was admitted to the Snake River Correctional Institution in May 2016 on five counts of sexual abuse in the first degree, one count of sodomy in the first degree and one count of coercion, according to the Oregon Department of Corrections. He was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison.

The lawsuit calls for damages to be paid to the student for "permanent emotional injury, pain and suffering, physical and emotional trauma, and psychological damages."