DETROIT – Three men have pleaded guilty for their involvement in the 2019 carjacking of a Lyft driver in Detroit, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of Michigan.
Marquel Bazemore, 20, Jesse Evans, 21, and Joseph Shade-Hubbard, 21, all from Detroit, each face up to 15 years in prison for their involvement.
They are scheduled to be sentenced in July.
According to court documents, the three men ordered a Lyft on Aug. 9, 2019. The driver picked them up in a Cadillac Escalade at about 4 a.m. in the area of Eight Mile Road and Interstate 75 and drove to the area of Mark Twain and Lyndon streets. As the driver was dropping them off, Bazemore and Shade-Hubbard got out of the vehicle and began punching the victim. Evans, who court documents stated was in the front passenger seat, pointed a gun at the driver and demanded that he give him everything he had.
Bazemore and Shade-Hubbard began going through the driver’s pockets, taking his wallet, credit cards and money, according to court documents.
Men taken into custody
Shortly after the carjacking, members of the Detroit Police Department Commercial Auto Theft Section found the Escalade parked on Dean Street on Detroit’s east side, officials said.
Officers began watching the SUV. Shade-Hubbard, who was 19 at the time, walked out of a home on Dean Street, used keys to get into the Escalade, driving to a gas station in the 4100 block of Eight Mile Road. Arresting officers said they found the Escalade keys in his possession.
Shade-Hubbard provided officers with the address of the house he left from before getting into the Escalade, police said.
Officers went to the house with a search warrant and found a Glock handgun, two hooded sweatshirts and a hooded jacket, according to court records.
Bazemore and Evans -- at the time 18 and 19 years old respectively -- were found in the same room as the gun. Officers said the house belonged to Evans’ parents and the room was identified as Evans’ bedroom. Officers said they searched Bazemore and found the driver’s stolen credit cards in his pants pocket.
Police said Evans was placed in a live lineup with men of a similar physical appearance. They said the driver picked Evans as the man riding in the front seat of the Escalade before the carjacking.
Details of plan revealed during interviews
Police said Shade-Hubbard, Evans and Bazemore were all interviewed while in custody, admitting to being present during the carjacking.
Bazemore and Evans admitted to discussing stealing a car with Shade-Hubbard, according to authorities. They said they were aware Evans would bring a gun to the theft attempt. Bazemore and Evans both independently told police that robbing a Lyft driver was Shade-Hubbard’s idea.
Police said Bazemore initially lied about his role in the carjacking before admitting to opening the driver’s door and trying to pull the driver out of the car. Bazemore and Evans told police that Shade-Hubbard, knowing the plan was to steal a car, had requested a Lyft using the app on his phone, according to court records. Evans admitted to having discussions with Shade-Hubbard over the phone regarding the plan to steal a car, police said.
Bazemore admitted to hitting the driver in the head multiple times to force him to submit, officials said. Evans said he removed the gun from his pocket and pointed it at the driver once Bazemore had opened the door and started hitting the driver, according to authorities. Evans also admitted to unfastening the driver’s seat belt to get him out of the car, police said.
Bazemore and Shade-Hubbard admitted to throwing the driver’s phones out of the car window to avoid being tracked after the carjacking, court records show.
All three men admitted to returning the driver’s car to Evans’ house on Dean Street, police said. Authorities said Bazemore told police that he had ordered food to be delivered to Evans’ house using one of the driver’s stolen credit cards.
Shade-Hubbard told police he drove the Escalade to a gas station to buy socks and other sundry items, officials said.
Evans admitted to trying to hide the handgun under his bed when police arrived at his parents’ house with a search warrant, according to court records.