Daughter of slain taxi driver pushes for more safety

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SAN DIEGO – A slain cab driver’s daughter is pushing for legislation to install security cameras in taxi cabs.

Savitar Sahou’s father Mir Sadat Sahou was shot and killed by Ismael Raul Lopez during a robbery on La Jolla Scenic Drive on September 28, 2011.

Savitar is reliving what she calls the nightmare. On Sunday, a cab driver was assaulted and carjacked in Point Loma.  Then, another driver was pistol-whipped, beaten and his cab was stolen on Monday.

“As the daughter for the victim of a homicide, I’m sincerely asking for everyone’s help,” pleaded Savitar.

She wants help in garnering attention on the need for cameras in taxi cabs.

“Let’s just say a fatality occurs like my dad’s case then we have some answers,” said Savitar.
“I believe that cameras in the taxis could make a difference,” said San Diego City Councilmember Marti Emerald.

Emerald is backing the legislation on cameras in cabs.  The bill was introduced by Senator Tom Harman of Huntington Beach back in December.  Emerald said it’s currently on hold because of litigation.  There are still unanswered questions over what type of cameras to install, but also questions over privacy rights.

“It’s beyond time we have to install cameras and require them to protect cab drivers and the passengers, too,” said Emerald.

“It’s very, very dangerous it’s very unprotected,” said Savitar.

For Sahou, the pain of the losing her father will never cease.

“I’m angry, I get angry very because it’s so hurtful, I think of the little things he would do and say and all the things he accomplished for our family,” said Savitar.

In small ways, it helps know that she’s carrying on her father’s legacy.

“Drivers should feel safe every time they get in their cab they should feel safe, they deserve that.”

The bill may still face another obstacle.  Harman who carried the bill has since termed out of office.  It will depend of the results of the election to determine who will pick up the legislation.

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