SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — An Uber driver fought off a band of armed carjackers in San Francisco early Thursday, one of three unsuccessful carjacking attempts by a gang of three suspects during the early morning hours.
The San Francisco police said the first armed attempt was reported about 2:30 a.m. at 9th St. and Harrison St. A second was called in at 2:35 a.m. on the 300 block of Harrison. Then a third call came in at around 3 a.m. at Mission St. and Duboce Ave.
In all three incidents, the drivers were able to maintain control of their vehicles and the suspects fled.
Police spokesman Ofc. Robert Rueca said due to the proximity of time and location as well as similar suspect descriptions, they believed the same suspects may have attempted all three carjackings.
Police have not released a description of the three suspects nor have any arrests been made.
The Uber driver — who only gave his name as Frank — was the first victim.
“I was turning from Harrison to 9th Street when three people come running around the corner,” he said. “They just came to my car — all three of them were trying to get in. One got in the backseat, one was trying to get in the driver’s seat with a gun, pointing it at me. I just kept whacking at the barrel, not letting him (into the car).”
“He kept trying to open my door,” Frank continued. “Finally opened it, tried to yank me out. I just kept fighting him the whole time. Finally, I got back into the car…I started to make the turn and I realized there was person still in my car. I just told him — ‘Get Out!’ He jumped out.”
Frank was still shaken even after the carjackers fled and San Francisco police arrived on the scene.
“It was kind of crazy,” he said. “You got a gun pointed in your face, but they are not taking my car.”
Minutes after the first carjacking attempt, just a half a block down 9th Street, police said the same suspects smashed a front window of another car while the driver was sitting inside the parked vehicle. Victim Connor Burrell said after the window was smashed, the rest was a blur.
“Having a window broken on you is always really terrifying and paralyzing in that feeling. I am just really glad that I got out of this with a little bit of a cut,” said Burrell.
A third incident happened moments after that at Mission and Duboce. In all three cases, the suspects were able to escape. None of the victims suffered serious injuries.
Police said this is not normal activity.
“Definitely unusual. We do experience carjackings throughout the city, but I wouldn’t say there’s an uptick,” said Rueca.
Police are collecting footage from nearby businesses whose surveillance cameras may have caught the suspects in action.
Jackie Ward contributed to this story.