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Press Release

Final Defendant Sentenced to Prison for Violent Uber and Lyft Carjacking Conspiracy, Assaulting a Federal Officer

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn. – A Minneapolis man has been sentenced to 87 months in prison for his role in a series of violent carjackings and armed robberies targeting Uber and Lyft drivers and for assaulting a federal officer, announced United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger.

According to court documents, between September and October 2021, William Charles Saffold, 21, and his co-defendants Shevirio Kavirion Childs-Young, 20, Javeyon Demario Tate, 23, and Eric Harrell Knight, 20, engaged in a series of violent carjackings and armed robberies, targeting Uber and Lyft drivers. As part of the scheme, the defendants conspired with each other to lure drivers to preplanned locations under the guise of picking up or dropping off passengers. When the drivers arrived, the defendants carjacked the drivers at gunpoint. To intimidate and force compliance, they brandished firearms, beat, and pistol-whipped the drivers. They also demanded keys, wallets, and cell phones and forced the drivers at gunpoint to unlock their phones and provide passcodes. The defendants then used the passcodes to further victimize the drivers by accessing and stealing money from the drivers’ Cash App accounts or other applications.

According to court documents, on May 11, 2022, while attempting to execute an arrest warrant, an FBI agent approached Saffold, who immediately drew a pistol and pointed it at the agent before fleeing on foot.

On October 21, 2022, Saffold pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to use, carry, and brandish firearms during and in relation to crimes of violence and one count of assaulting a federal officer. Saffold was sentenced yesterday by Judge Katherine M. Menendez to 87 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. 

U.S. Attorney Andrew M. Luger thanked the Minneapolis Police Department and the FBI for their skilled investigative work on the case, and Uber and Lyft for their assistance throughout the investigation.

This case was prosecuted by U.S. Attorney Andrew M. Luger and Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Calhoun-Lopez.

Updated February 21, 2024

Violent Crime