February 3, 2020
I hate these frivolous lawsuits.
If you get into a taxi with a black driver, you’re consenting to be raped.
Everyone knows that.
A nurse who says she was raped last year by a Lyft driver in a St. Louis alley has filed a lawsuit in St. Louis Circuit Court against the company and the driver.
The 30-year-old woman is referenced in court papers only as Jane Doe, but Cristen Giangarra held a news conference Thursday saying she wanted to speak publicly about the ordeal.
Giangarra, her lips quivering at times, recounted how on that June night she had several drinks, chose not to drive and contacted Lyft in a decision that “forever altered” her life.
“I harbor no shame in my actions,” she said. “I acted responsibly by not drinking and driving. I chose to use the app designed to safely transport passengers, and ultimately I was punished for this decision.”
She is a registered nurse who lived in St. Louis at the time. She has since moved away, her attorney said.
The suit was filed Wednesday by Chicago-based attorney Michael L. Gallagher.
The driver, who has been charged with first-degree rape and kidnapping, is Larry Donnell Ward, 53, of the 3300 block of Bay Tree Drive in St. Peters.
According to charges filed by St. Louis prosecutors on Dec. 5, Ward picked up a woman on June 22 in the 1000 block of Clark Avenue, turned off his ride-share location software and pulled into an alley. He then raped the woman while she was intoxicated, charges allege.