Monday, May 12, 2008

Man offers ride home, charged as illegal taxi service

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The 78-year-old said he was walking into a Winn-Dixie to get some groceries when he was approached by a woman who said she needed a ride.

"She asked me, 'Do I do a service?'" O'Neil said. "I told her no. She said, 'I need help getting home.'

"O'Neil told the woman if she was still there when he finished his shopping, he would give her a ride. She was, so he did.

As it turned out, the woman was an undercover employee with the consumer services department targeting people providing illegal taxi services.

"She said the reason she targeted him (is because) she saw him sitting in his car for a few minutes," said Ellen Novodeletsky, O'Neil's attorney.