Clare Dunn revealed with People that she was assaulted by a Lyft driver in Nashville in June. In the emotional retelling of the events, Dunn shared that she had traveled to Nashville from her home in Colorado to begin making music for her In This Kind of Light EP. On the night of June 26, she went out with friends, and she and a friend took a Lyft together after the night. The Lyft driver dropped her friend off at her residence, and as they began the 10-mile drive back to Dunn’s home, she tried to direct him to take a route that didn’t require the highway. That’s when things took a turn for the worse.
“We were barreling towards the interstate and I spoke up and was like, ‘Hey, that was my turn. Where are you going? You need to take the next right turn,'” Dunn told the publication. “He was screaming at me. I couldn’t really make it out — his English wasn’t the best. And I just knew in that moment that I wasn’t going to get on that interstate with him. I wasn’t going to go quietly where he wanted to take me. And I think he realized maybe this girl was going to be more trouble than she’s worth.”
Dunn continued, sharing that the driver, whom she remembers as a 6’2”-6’3” 250 lb. man, eventually pulled to the side of the road one mile from her house, which is where the assault occurred.
“Before I could even get my shoes off or get my phone to try and call 911, he grabbed me by the collar, ripped me out of the backseat and slammed me face-first down into a ditch,”Dunn says. “Somehow in the scuffle, I thought I called 911, but I didn’t even get the number right. But it was a miracle. They called me back. And when I came to, I was screaming, and I saw headlights. He ended up just leaving me alone at that point and took off.”
Dunn then made her way back to her home with a bloodied face. In the morning, both Dunn and her friend recognized that they had felt uneasy about the driver prior to the incident.
“It makes me emotional, but she said, ‘I wanted to tell you to get out and we’ll get another ride, or you could just sleep on my couch,’ and we both ignored it,” says Dunn. “As women, we sometimes do that but I think when we have those feelings, they are alarm bells. I remember telling myself that I was overthinking it and I just wanted to go home. That’s all I remember thinking about it and just trying to tell myself it’s fine. I blame myself.”
Dunn filed a police report soon after the incident and accurately identified the suspect with the help of a detective. A warrant is currently out for the driver’s arrest. In statement to People, Lyft assured that the driver has been permanently removed from the platform.
Dunn says she still dealing with the after-effects of her frightening experience. She has returned to her home in Colorado, but she often wakes up in the night thinking someone may be at her door. The singer hopes by telling her story she can remind other people to be careful and take safety steps, such as taking a screenshot of the driver’s name and license plate information from the app.
“This has been hell,” says Dunn. “I don’t want anyone else to go through it. Even if it just can keep one girl or one guy from going through this … he knew what he was doing. He hit ‘complete the ride’ after it was done. I didn’t take a screenshot of his license information during the ride. All of that goes away when a ride is completed. All I had was a little tiny profile picture and his first name. It’s a slow process if you don’t have all that info.”