Boston Police Officer Charged With Attacking Uber Driver

An off-duty Boston police officer is free on $500 bail after pleading not guilty to assaulting an Uber driver.

Sixteen-year department veteran Michael Doherty, 40, was arraigned Monday on multiple charges including assault and battery, using a motor vehicle without authority, and civil rights violations for allegedly using racial slurs during the altercation.

Prosecutors say the Uber driver was dropping Doherty off in South Boston around 2:30 a.m. Sunday when Doherty allegedly began yelling at him and using racial slurs, saying he was being dropped off at the wrong address. Doherty allegedly began hitting the driver, who got out of his car in an attempt to escape. Doherty then allegedly got in the driver's seat and drove away.

The Uber drive told authorities he flagged down a passing motorist for help, and they both followed Doherty until he stopped and exited the vehicle. There, prosecutors say Doherty allegedly approached both men and used another racial slur against the second man. The three became involved in a physical altercation, according to prosecutors, and Doherty left the scene when he saw an approaching police car.

Doherty was identified through credit card information associated with his Uber account, and turned himself into police Sunday.

Defense lawyer Kenneth Anderson said Doherty disputes the charges and is the real victim.

Doherty has been placed on leave pending resolution of the case against him.

With reporting by The Associated Press and the WBUR Newsroom.

This article was originally published on January 05, 2015.


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