Steven Rayow has been suspended by the car service Uber for firing his weapon into the foot of a passenger in his vehicle.
Rayow has a concealed carry permit and is also a retired New York City police officer.
Earlier this month Uber updated its gun policy, banning both drivers and passengers from carrying guns in Uber vehicles. (RELATED: Uber Quietly Changes Its Gun Policy)
Uber’s updated firearm policy states, “We seek to ensure that everyone using the Uber digital platform—both driver-partners and riders—feels safe and comfortable using the service. During a ride arranged through the Uber platform, Uber and its affiliates therefore prohibit possessing firearms of any kind in a vehicle.”
On Sunday evening in Clearwater, Fla., Rayow went to pick up Marc Memel for a routine Uber trip. However, an argument quickly escalated into a physical confrontation all before the ride started.
The cause of the argument is not clear, but according to Clearwater police spokesman Rob Shaw, “The driver basically told us that the passenger started choking him. He had his hands around his neck, and in fear of losing consciousness, that’s when the driver of the car pulled out a gun, and in the ensuing struggle, that gun went off.” The shooting was first reported by NBC Channel 8 WFLA.
New Channel 8 spoke with a witness of the fight, who said, “If he was choking him then, I guess, what else are you gonna do?”
Uber has blocked Rayow from accessing the company system, a spokesman told WFLA.
The police are continuing to investigate the cause of the incident.