Deputies: Spring Hill Woman Tries to Bail on $161 Cab Fare
July 09, 2012
A woman was arrested last weekend following accusations she tried to sneak away without paying for a cab ride across two counties.
Her arrest came about 10 weeks after failing to pay a dinner and wine tab at a local restaurant.
Jennifer Ann McNeill, 42, of New Port Richey, was charged Sunday with retail theft and submitting a false report to law enforcement.
A driver from United Taxi picked up McNeill in Clearwater and drove her to 5419 Elwood Road in Spring Hill, at which time she told the driver her mother would pay for the $161 fare, according to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.
McNeill walked toward the backyard and the suspicious driver followed her, deputies said. He spotted her running through the backyard and detained her.
He escorted her to his vehicle with the intention of calling law enforcement and she started to resist. At one point, she threatened to “call rape” if he didn’t let her go, according to an arrest affidavit.
The cab driver honked his horn and pressed his emergency button in his car, which alerted the neighbors, deputies said.
McNeill slipped out of her shirt, broke free and ran away, according to the sheriff’s office.
Deputies said they later discovered her at her mother’s house off Gifford Drive. She initially said the cab driver tried to rape her, provided a sworn written statement alleging he did so, but changed her story later, authorities said.
She admitted she didn’t have the money for the fare and knew her mother would not pay it, so she decided to run away from the taxi driver, according to the affidavit.
McNeill was arrested the night of April 25 after she failed to pay $45 for a dinner tab at Carrabba’s near Brooksville, deputies said.
She had dinner and wine at the restaurant hours after being released from the Hernando County Jail – on a trespassing charge from three days earlier, according to reports.
McNeill used a credit card, but it was declined, deputies said.
She tried using other credit cards, but none cleared, according to the sheriff’s office.
After an hour or so of texting people – and after no one responded to pay her bill – deputies arrived and arrested her.
She pleaded guilty at her next court hearing and was sentenced to two months in jail, according to records.