Preston taxi driver left feeling “abandoned” by police after masked men attacked his car

A taxi driver in Preston says he felt “abandoned” when police did nothing after masked men attacked his car with a golf club.

By Megan Titley
Friday, 18th October 2019, 5:17 pm
Taxi driver Naveed Soomro says he feel abandoned by police inaction
Taxi driver Naveed Soomro says he feel abandoned by police inaction

Naveed Soomro, 40, says he is still shaken after the two yobs smashed one of his taxi windows as he was trying to escape with a passenger.

The father-of-three says he believes the two men had been monitoring his client’s movements and had run out of their BMW when they saw him get into Naveed’s taxi.

Naveed, who lives in

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Ribbleton, said: “I was given a job to pick up someone from Deepdale on Thursday. When I got there I rang the client and after about three or four minutes he came out.

“There was a BMW on the top of Raven Street. I didn’t realise who was in the BMW but they were monitoring my passenger.

“They came out of the BMW and started running towards us. There were two of them running and a third in the driving seat.

“They were in black hoodies in full masks so that only their eyes could be seen.

“One of them had a big golf club. The passenger said ‘they’re going to kill me, can you drive and lock the doors’.

“I reversed back all the way down the street. My priority was to look after my passenger.

“There was a junction and I couldn’t reverse any further. They hit the glass in the passenger side. They didn’t bother me.

“I drove down a narrow alley, passed the BMW and they came round another street and hit the car with the golf club again leaving a dent.”

Naveed says the attacker hit his taxi so hard that the end of the golf club flew off into his car.

Once he and his passenger managed to get away from the men, who Naveed described as “slim, tall white men” they decided to go straight to the police station.

He added: “The evidence was still in the car so I went to the police station so that they would be able to see it.

“But they were not interested. I wanted to get a quick response but they weren’t bothered.

“The lady on the counter said ‘there’s nobody to see you at this time’. I was shocked. They gave me an appointment for Monday at 2pm.

“I couldn’t believe it. I felt abandoned. You’re not protected. That means if something happens then we have to deal with it ourselves next time.”

Usman Musha, owner of Ashton Allied Taxis which employs Naveed, described the police response as “unacceptable”.

He said: “Preston taxi drivers don’t even go to the police because you never get an answer anyway unless you call 999.

“I have complained and it’s a situation where police have no staff. They say I’m sorry we’ve got nobody to attend, we are short of staff.”

A Lancashire Police spokesman said the force was treating the incident as criminal damage.

He added: “While it’s true we weren’t able to deal with the taxi driver’s report when he came in to the station there were a couple of good reasons for that – demand was extremely high - the M6 was closed and there were a number of high risk missing people - and the incident wasn’t on-going so there was no immediate risk or threat.

“It has however been logged and we have spoken to the taxi driver.”