Ohio man charged with murder over shooting of Black ride-share driver

<span>Lo-Letha Hall in dash-cam footage.</span><span>Photograph: Clark County Sheriff's Office</span>
Lo-Letha Hall in dash-cam footage.Photograph: Clark County Sheriff's Office

An Ohio man was charged with murder after shooting a Black ride-share driver in an unprovoked attack, following the most recent string of cases of Black Americans being shot while doing mundane things.

William Brock, 81, who is white, was arrested after he fatally shot Lo-Letha Hall, 61, outside his home in South Charleston, Ohio, about an hour outside Dayton, NBC News reported.

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Brock told police that he shot Hall because he believed she was working with scammers who had allegedly called Brock’s home that same morning.

On 25 March, Brock received a scam call from a man who falsely identified himself as an officer at the local courthouse.

“Mr Brock received some scam call by a person purporting to be someone from our courts who informed him a family member was incarcerated and that he had a bond of a significant amount of money,” said Lt Kristopher Shultz of the Clark county sheriff’s office in a press release.

Hall, who was working for Uber at the time of the shooting, had driven to Brock’s home to retrieve a package. The scammer who had called Brock had requested an Uber driver through the ride-share app.

When Hall arrived, Brock accused her of being associated with the scammer.

Brock pointed a gun at Hall, demanding that Hall tell him which scammers she was working with. Brock also allegedly took Hall’s cellphone and physically blocked her from leaving, the Springfield News-Sun reported.

Throughout the harrowing ordeal, Hall had no idea what Brock was referring to, police said.

“[Hall] made no threats or assaults toward Mr Brock, and made no demands, other than to ask about the package she was sent to retrieve through the Uber App,” Shultz said in the release.

Dash-cam footage from Hall’s car provides additional details of the tragic incident.

In the video, Hall is seen approaching Brock’s home. Seconds later, Hall retreats from Brock’s residence as Brock points a handgun at her.

The pair walk out of view from the camera. What sounds like several gunshots are then heard. Hall can be heard screaming for help.

At one point, Brock says: “I’ll shoot your other leg.”

Brock shot Hall a total of three times, police said, and then called police. Hall later died at an area hospital during surgery.

Brock told police that he shot Hall while she was going to her car because he feared she was getting a gun.

He was later arrested and charged with murder, felonious assault and kidnapping after police determined that Hall did not pose a threat to him and that Brock had failed to contact police for assistance during the pick-up.

Brock posted a $200,000 bond on Wednesday and may face additional charges as police investigate the incident.

In a statement, Uber confirmed that they had spoken with Hall’s family and were in contact with law enforcement.

“This is a horrific tragedy and our hearts continue to be with Lo-Letha’s loved ones as they grieve. We have been in contact with law enforcement and remain committed to supporting their investigation,” said an Uber spokesperson in a statement.

The ride-share company added that the account that ordered the Uber to Brock’s house had been banned.

Last month’s shooting is another example of Black Americans being shot unprovoked.

It comes more than three months after the shooting of 16-year-old Ralph Yarl, a Black teenager who was shot by an elderly white man after ringing the wrong doorbell in Missouri.