81-Year-Old Ohio Man Charged with Murder for Fatally Shooting Uber Driver in Scam Gone Wrong

81-year-old man fatally shoots Uber driver he mistook for a phone scammer demanding ransom, highlighting the devastating consequences of such scams targeting the elderly.

author-image
Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
Updated On
New Update
81-Year-Old Ohio Man Charged with Murder for Fatally Shooting Uber Driver in Scam Gone Wrong

81-Year-Old Ohio Man Charged with Murder for Fatally Shooting Uber Driver in Scam Gone Wrong

William Brock, an 81-year-old man from Ohio, has been charged with murder for fatally shooting 61-year-old Uber driver Loletha Hall, whom he mistook for a phone scammer demanding ransom. The tragic incident unfolded on March 25 when Brock called 911 before noon to report that he had shot someone at his South Charleston home, claiming Hall had tried to rob him.

However, investigators later revealed that Hall was an unwitting victim caught in the crosshairs of a scam targeting both her and Brock. The elderly man had been receiving threatening calls from someone claiming to be a court officer, demanding $12,000 to free Brock's nephew from jail. Simultaneously, the scammer hired Hall through the Uber app to pick up a package at Brock's residence.

When Hall arrived at the scene, Brock confronted her in the driveway with a handgun, demanding to know the names of the people who called him. Dashcam video captured the chilling encounter, with Hall pleading for Brock to stop before he allegedly shot her in the foot as she tried to leave. A scuffle ensued, and Brock shot Hall two more times, killing her.

Why this matters: This heartbreaking case highlights the devastating consequences of phone scams targeting vulnerable individuals, particularly the elderly. It also underscores the importance of heightened awareness and caution when dealing with unexpected demands for money or threats involving loved ones.

Bodycam footage from responding officers showed Brock appearing dazed and confused, calmly explaining the situation and claiming he thought Hall was going to kill him. However, police stated that Hall, who was unarmed, made no threats or assaults toward Brock and only asked about the package she was sent to retrieve.

Brock has been indicted on charges of murder, felonious assault, and kidnapping, to which he has pleaded not guilty. If convicted, he could face a life sentence. Investigators have tracked the scammer's call to Canada but believe a burner phone was used. The FBI has issued an alert regarding government impersonation scams that send couriers to victims' homes, often targeting older people, to collect money or have them purchase precious metals.

Uber expressed condolences to Hall's family, with a spokesperson stating, "This was a horrific incident and our thoughts are with Loletha Hall's family during this difficult time. We've banned the account used to request the trip and will work with law enforcement on their investigation." Hall, a beloved mother and entrepreneur, was remembered at her funeral for her warm spirit and dedication to her family and community.

Key Takeaways

  • 81-year-old William Brock fatally shot Uber driver Loletha Hall, mistaking her for a phone scammer.
  • Brock had received threatening calls demanding $12,000 to free his nephew from jail, and the scammer hired Hall to pick up a package.
  • Dashcam footage captured Brock confronting Hall, shooting her in the foot, and then killing her in a scuffle.
  • Brock has been charged with murder, felonious assault, and kidnapping, facing a possible life sentence.
  • The incident highlights the devastating consequences of phone scams targeting the elderly, and the importance of caution.