ATHENS, Ga. -- Police have charged a cab driver with trying to shake down a University of Georgia student.
Ibrahim Musa el-Hussein Shakak, 37, contacted Jeffrey Keith Whitlock earlier this month and promised he wouldn’t press an assault charge if Whitlock gave him $300, police said.
Whitlock was arrested early the morning of Nov. 13 after police say he slapped the cabbie in the face with two $5 bills, then threw a leather cowboy boot at Shakak as the cabbie chased the student to his apartment in an attempt to get paid.
Three women who were in the cab told officers that Whitlock refused to pay for his ride home and became “belligerent and aggressive,” and they locked themselves in the taxi and armed themselves with pepper spray when Shakak chased after Whitlock.
Whitlock, who told officers he got upset when Shakak doubled his fare, was charged with simple assault.
The 23-year-old student’s father later called police to report that Shakak had contacted his son and offered to drop the assault charge for $300, police said.
The father met with the cabbie Tuesday afternoon on College Station Road, where a detective kept them under surveillance and saw the two men make an exchange.
The student’s father gave Shakak the cash he asked for, and in return got a letter in which the cabbie agreed to drop charges against his son.
Officers took the cab driver into custody, then released him after an interview, police said.
A detective Wednesday morning obtained an arrest warrant charging Shakak with felony theft by extortion, and the cabbie surrendered at the Clarke County Jail later that afternoon.