Taxi driver charged with sexually assaulting female passenger in West Vancouver

North Shore News

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A cab driver has been charged with sexually assaulting a female passenger in West Vancouver.

According to West Vancouver police, the victim was sitting in a taxi and waiting for a friend on the 100-block of Whonoak Road in the early morning of Jan. 2 when the assault allegedly happened.

Row of taxi cabs. File photo, North Shore News.

The victim says she was grabbed “in the genital area by the suspect, before the suspect took the victim’s hand and forcibly placed it in contact with the suspect’s genital area, which had been exposed through an open zipper,” an email from the West Vancouver police stated. “The victim and friend reported to police after safely returning home.”

After investigating, police arrested Deepak Sharma, a 60-year-old Abbotsford man, on Jan. 17. Sharma made a first appearance in North Vancouver provincial court on Wednesday where the Crown swore one charge of sexual assault.

He remains free on bail, with conditions not to contact the passenger.

Sharma had not yet entered a plea in court.

He has had his taxi permit revoked already, according to police.

Sharma is due back in court later this month.