Alleged taxi hijacker faces chargesPublished 10:00am Wednesday, January 16, 2013
An Albert Lea man has been charged with aggravated robbery and fleeing police after he allegedly assaulted a taxi driver, took the taxi and then led officers on a chase early Saturday morning.
Quinten Duane Amos, 32, appeared in Freeborn County District Court Tuesday on the charges, both felonies.
Court records state Amos allegedly began striking the cab driver in the head about a block after he was picked up from 1801 Oakwood Terrace, telling the driver repeatedly that he wanted to go and threatening him.
At one point, Amos tried to climb into the front seat, at which time the cab driver quickly stopped the yellow Ford Taurus station wagon taxi and ran.
As he ran, the driver called the cab dispatcher stating he had been assaulted, then he ran to another vehicle to get help.
Officers found the taxi near the intersection of Madison Avenue and Front Street and was estimated to be driving at least double the posted 30 mph speed limit even after police attempted to pull him over.
He also reportedly drove through stop signs and a red light before pulling over on the wrong side of the road on Ermina Avenue.
The incident was caught on video in the cab.
In court Tuesday, Assistant Freeborn County Attorney David Walker read through a series of more than a dozen previous arrests from Amos, also calling him “a confirmed gang member” of the Gangster Disciples. His previous arrests included drug possession, theft, disorderly conduct, aggravated robbery and driving while intoxicated, among others.
“The current charge is a very serious matter,” Walker said.
Freeborn County District Court Judge Ross Leuning ordered Amos be held on an unconditional bail of $75,000 or a conditional bail of $35,000. Conditions included not using alcohol or drugs, submitting to random testing, not having weapons, signing a waiver of extradition and reporting to court services five times a week.
Amos indicated he would agree to the conditions, though he thought he should be allowed to leave on his own recognizance.
He is next slated to appear in court on Jan. 28.
First-degree aggravated robbery carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $35,000 fine.