An Indianapolis man is accused of shooting a Lyft driver and stealing his car for driving to a family gathering in northern parts of Indiana.
Indianapolis Metro Police said July 1 that Devin Powell, 24, had been arrested and charged with the murder.
The Lyft driver has been identified as Anthony Garland, 34, Fox59 reported. He was found with a head wound, in addition to other injuries, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The 24-year-old told investigators he shot Mr Garland after ordering a ride via the Lyft app because the driver tried to “smack him and take his money”.
Powell has repeatedly said the shooting was in self-defense, alleging Mr. Garland turned around and tried to take money from him, according to Fox59.
A police report said Powell said he dumped Mr. Garland’s body on the side of the road.
Next, Powell stole the car, a white 2013 GMC Acadia, according to court documents. He told the police he bought new seat covers, cleaned out the shell casings, changed his clothes, and proceeded to drive to the family gathering.
At first, he said he saw the car door open and the engine running as it went. At that moment he decided to use the car to get away. He initially claimed that only later did he find the dead man near the car before he confessed to committing the shooting, according to Fox59.
Investigators were aware that Mr. Powell had asked Mr. Garland for a ride.
Police said Mr. Garland was found on the side of the road Thursday morning and has been identified using an ongoing missing person investigation. His wife had reported him missing the night before.
Authorities said the car was found with Mr. Powell in Merrillville, Indiana.
Police added that Lyft assisted their investigation and that Mr. Powell is accused of murder and robbery.
A Lyft spokesperson said independent “This horrific tragedy saddens our hearts, and our thoughts are with Mr. Garland’s loved ones during this very difficult time.”
“We will continue to assist law enforcement authorities in their investigation in any way we can, and we will continue our efforts to combat this senseless violence and help keep drivers safe,” the spokesperson added.