Former Taco Bell Exec Sues Uber Driver He Attacked For $5 Million
In the suit, Benjamin Golden, 32, accuses Uber driver Edward Caban of illegally recording the Oct. 30 beating on his dashcam in Newport Beach, according to CNBC. Furthermore, Golden argues that he shouldn't be to blame for the injuries Caban suffered after the attack. Golden's complaint was filed on Dec. 4, but CNBC says they are the first media outlet to report on the lawsuit.
This comes soon after the beleaguered Golden cried on camera in a CBS L.A. interview, saying he had no recollection of what happened that night, and was "sincerely sorry" for what he had done. "I'm ashamed to say I got to that point. I don't normally do that and this is a situation where I did," Golden admits in the interview. "I handled it wrong in a wrong way. I crossed the line. It was caught on camera. I have to face it."
In the days leading up to that interview, Caban filed a civil lawsuit against Golden for assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent infliction of emotional distress. Taco Bell fired Golden as the company's Mobile Experience & Innovation Lead, with a spokesperson saying, "Given the behavior of the individual, it is clear he can no longer work for us."
In the dashcam video, Caban is driving a visibly drunk Golden. At one point, Caban pulls over and tells Golden that Golden's not giving him directions and that he needs to get out of his car. Golden refuses to and responds by smacking Caban several times in the head and face and grabbing his hair, all while cursing at him. Caban then maces him. At the time of the attack, police also arrested Golden and he was later charged with multiple misdemeanor charges of assault and battery.
Golden's lawyer Courtney Pilchman told CNBC that she's trying to get the video thrown out as evidence in the criminal case against Golden. The suit says that it's against California state law to record someone without their consent. Caban's attorney Rivers Morrell III told CNBC Golden's claims are "totally bogus," and that state law applies to audio recordings, not video recordings.
Golden also says since the video went viral, he's since suffered from emotional distress and anxiety. He also blames Caban for picking up Golden as a passenger even though it was "apparent" that Golden was "intoxicated."