16-year-old girl accused of hacking into the Uber driver’s death

LINCOLNWOOD, Ill. – A 16-year-old girl walked out of a suburban Chicago Walmart holding a machete and knife she had stolen, got into an Uber car and began hacking the driver, prosecutors said during a hearing on Wednesday. The driver died of his wounds on Tuesday after giving the police a description of the attacker which led to her arrest.

A prosecutor reads to the court a description of the attack which said Eliza Wasni just climbed in a car driven by 34-year-old Grant Nelson, and stabbed him and hacked him to death early Tuesday morning. The judge ordered the girl, who was charged as an adult with first-degree murder, held without bond.

The 2-page description gives no reason for the attack, but portrays Wasni as a quiet girl who “casually”, can be seen walking through Walmart, the knives in hand, before they walked out without paying.


Prosecutors said that Nelson, a resident of Wilmette, picked up the girl shortly after 3 a.m. Tuesday in Lincolnwood. It was her third ride in an Uber vehicle in the early morning hours of Tuesday. Two minutes after he began to drive away, the prosecutor said that Wasni started to cross Nelson from the back seat. Nelson was able to stop and ran into a nearby condominium building, where he shouted: “Help me, help me! I’m going to die!” to the residents of 911.

Wasni climbed in the passenger seat of Nelson’s blood-splattered silver sedan and drove away, hitting a median in the road. She jumped out of the car and fled on foot.

When Lincolnwood police arrived, they found the vehiclewith blood on both the inside and the outside, with Nelson the phone open to open the Uber app. The app said that Nelson passenger was someone with the name Eliza.

Officers followed the process of blood and found Nelson lying in the grass. He was bleeding heavily from several wounds, and was able to tell the officers what had happened. He died in a nearby hospital a few hours later.

With the help of the description given by Nelson, the police found her near crouching behind an air conditioner — a machete in one hand and a knife in the other. The police warned her that she would be shot with a Taser, if they do not drop the weapons, and when they’re not at an officer used the Taser. Wasni dropped the knives and was taken into custody. The police said that they do not make a statement.


According to the prosecutor, the police received a shirt of the girl could be seen wearing in the Walmart. The shirt had blood on it.

Uber officials said that the company was working with the police to provide information relevant for the investigation.

“We are devastated by the loss of one of our partners,” Uber said in a statement. “Our deepest thoughts and prayers go out to his family and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time.”

Nelson’s sister, Alex Nelson, told WMAQ-TV in Chicago that her brother was a good man.

“He was not a vengeful person,” Alex Nelson said. “He was not a cruel person. He didn’t deserve this fate.”

It is the first murder in Lincolnwood since 2006, police said.

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