Former Halifax cabbie gets four-month conditional sentence for sex assault
A former Halifax taxi driver has been handed a four-month conditional sentence for sexually assaulting a young woman in his cab 15 months ago.
In Halifax provincial court Thursday, Judge Michael Sherar also placed 29-year-old Saher Hamdan on probatiuon for three years following the conditional sentence.
In August, Sherar found Hamdan guilty of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old Halifax student by rubbing her thigh without consent and asking if he could kiss her.
“Operating as a taxi driver does not give you the opportunity to (impose) your sexual desires,” Sherar told the offender.
Sherar said young women travel by taxi out of convenience but also “for a sense of protection.”
“This assault was a breach of trust,” the judge said.
The victim testified at trial that she was picked up by a Casino cab at the Lower Deck bar on Lacewood Drive in Halifax at about 8:30 p.m on July 15, 2016, and asked the driver to take her to a male friend’s Sherwood Street apartment.
She said when they reached the destination, the driver pulled the vehicle into the dimly lit parking lot rather than stopping on the street. The woman planned to use her credit card to pay the $12.80 fare but Hamdan told her they would have to wait a few minutes while his payment terminal reconnected.
Hamdan asked the woman if she wanted a drink of his coffee. After she declined his offer, he held the cup to her mouth and tilted it until she took a drink.
Hamdan asked the woman if she had a boyfriend. When she said she didn’t, he asked her why and told her she was pretty.
She said the driver then rubbed her left leg, moved it to the left, reached under her seat to get at a latch and slid her seat back. She said she heard a click and noticed her door was locked.
The woman texted her friend inside the apartment building to say the cabbie was being creepy and asked him to come help her.
She said Hamdan then asked if he could kiss her and got “worked up” after she said no.
Her friend then tapped on her window, and she left the vehicle without paying.