Former Uber driver sentenced to 80 years in prison for rape, sexual assaults

EL CAJON, Calif. (KGTV) -- A former Uber driver who pleaded guilty to raping a female passenger and sexually assaulting as many as 14 others was sentenced in court Wednesday.

A judge sentenced John David Sanchez, 53, to 80 years in prison. Sanchez pleaded guilty in August to 34 charges including rape and sodomy of an unconscious person.

Sanchez was initially arrested about a month after a woman told police she was raped by Sanchez in February of 2016.

RELATED: Uber driver accused of rape to be arraigned

Sanchez was fired by Uber. Investigators later found a number of other women who said they were also sexually assaulted by Sanchez in 2007, 2011 and 2013, but had not reported the attacks.

Most of the victims told investigators they were unconscious from drugs or alcohol when the attacks occurred, according to police in El Cajon.

RELATED: Uber driver accused of sexual assault faces more charges

According to their website, Uber completes background checks on all its drivers. Read the policy from Uber’s website below:

“All drivers wanting to use the Uber app are required to undergo a screening process, like motor vehicle record and background checks, to ensure safety and compliance with our criteria. [4]

What leads to you losing access to your account? We will permanently deactivate a driver’s account if a routine motor vehicle record or background check uncovers a violation of Uber’s safety standards or of other criteria required by local regulators.”

Safety officials recommended several tips to USA Today on staying safe while riding in an Uber. See the tips below: 

  • Verify the identity of the driver and the car before you get in
  • Wait inside for your ride to come
  • Keep in touch with family or friends throughout the ride
  • Take note of the driver's rating in the app
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