Video shows Lyft driver being pummeled by passenger in New York

WOODSIDE, Queens -- Disturbing video shows a Lyft driver viciously attacked by a passenger in Queens, New York, and now, that driver is speaking out about the harrowing ordeal.

It happened around 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 23, on 33rd Street in Woodside.

Authorities say the driver, 36-year-old Eduardo Madiedo, became involved in a dispute with a couple in the backseat.

Madiedo said the passenger wanted to go to Mount Sinai Hospital in Long Island City and demanded he break traffic laws to get there.

He then became agitated and impatient, Madiedo said, and dashcam video shows the crazed and shirtless passenger pummeling him with punches while he is behind the wheel and driving.

"I respectfully asked them not to disrespect me, or I would end the ride," he said. "I guess that ticked him off, and he just started all of the sudden swinging at me and punching me in the back of the head. I did my best to block it, the hits that he was throwing at me, and trying not to crash my car or hurt anybody on the street. I wear glasses, and when he punched me, he knocked my glasses off. So I was squinting and just trying to get out of a really difficult situation."

The man then tried to climb into the front seat before eventually exiting the vehicle.

Madiedo was not seriously hurt, but the incident left him bruised -- and angry.

He says that despite the video and the information in the Lyft app, the man has not yet been apprehended.

The NYPD says that a report has been filed, and the investigation is ongoing.

A Lyft spokesperson issued the following statement: "Safety is fundamental to Lyft and the behavior described is unacceptable. There is no place for violence of any kind in our community. We have permanently banned the passenger and have reached out to the driver to offer our support. We stand ready to assist law enforcement with their investigation."
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