Taxi Driver Homicide Shocks Sussex Co. Cab Companies - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Taxi Driver Homicide Shocks Sussex Co. Cab Companies

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SUSSEX CO., Del. - It's something taxi drivers never thought could happen in Sussex County.

Delaware State Police say they are continuing their homicide investigation, after a 45-year-old cab driver, William Toomey, of Millsboro, was found dead in a Delaware Beach Taxi at around 10:00 PM on Wednesday on the shoulder of Country Living Road.

"I kept saying this is the beach this is not the inner city, these taxis here are about getting people out to have fun and enjoyment," says Barbara Harding, a driver at Eastern Shore Transport and friend of Toomey. "There are vacationers, a lot of locals, I have a lot of regular customers that use us year-round, I just can't believe that this would happen here."

While many of the Sussex County taxi companies compete against each other for business, Toomey was well-known amongst the group.

"All my drivers know him, he was so friendly to them," says Amir Mohammed, owner of Eastern Shore Transport. "So, it is really sad for us."

"He was a good guy, he worked for me for a little more than year or two," says Jim Allen, owner of Beach Ride Taxi.

Most taxi companies like Beach Ride Taxi do have a security procedure, including a radio to communicate where they are going after they pick anyone up, and a log sheet to document everything from a customer's address, to the total mileage driven.

"We always try to find out where they're going and that way we know where the person is and have a rough idea," says Allen.

However, with police remaining tight-lipped about whether Toomey's death was targeted, or random, drivers are wondering if current security is enough.

"I'm going to enforce the radio check more than I've done before," says Allen. "When we pull up on someone we've got nothing to defend ourselves, we have no idea what the person has done before they got in the cab."

Eastern Shore Transport says they have reached out to DelDOT about what they can do to improve safety, including a possible shield around the driver. Mohammed says on Wednesday night, he had to drop about 10 to 15 calls because drivers were too scared to come in.

"I don't blame them they're sad for what's happening," he says. "I had one lady, she needed to go to Washington, D.C. for over $300, but I couldn't find any driver to take her."

Allen worries that increased security, such as cameras, would be expensive and possibly turn customers away. In the meantime, it will be business as usual, but Toomey's death will constantly be in the back of his mind.

"We just have to realize you never know what can happen," he says. "It's a sad situation and in all honesty it could be anyone of us."

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