Health and Science

Another Uber fight! Dr. placed on leave over video meltdown


This doctor's got a bad case of Uber news.

A Florida M.D. has been placed on leave and is the subject of an internal investigation by her health-care system after a viral YouTube video emerged of an enraged young woman getting into a tussle with an Uber driver and trashing his vehicle on a Miami street.

The action against neurologist Anjali Ramkissoon, who was not criminally charged in the case, comes about three months after Taco Bell executive Benjamin Golden was arrested in California and fired after he was seen on a YouTube video pummeling an Uber driver who demanded that Golden leave the car because he was too drunk to give the driver directions.

Ramkissoon, who had been working as a resident at the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami, is not identified by name in the latest video, shot in Miami last Sunday night, according to the person who posted it online.

But after multiple social media sites identified her as the woman seen on that video, her employer, Jackson Health System, took action against her, as did Uber, which suspended Ramkissoon's account with the ride-sharing service.

And the Miller School of Medicine, where Ramkissoon had been working, according to Jackson Health, removed an image of Ramkissoon from its website. Ramkissoon's LinkedIn page identifies her as a "medical doctor at the University of Miami Department of Neurology."

"Anjali Ramkissoon, a fourth-year neurology resident employed by Jackson Health System, has been placed on administrative leave, effective immediately, and removed from all clinical duties," Jackson said in a statement.

"Jackson has launched an internal investigation. The outcome of the investigation will determine if any disciplinary action will be taken, up to and including termination," the health system said.

A University of Miami spokeswoman said only that Ramkissoon is not a University of Miami doctor or student.

"I have no other information to give you," a university spokeswoman said when asked if Ramkissoon had been working at the school of medicine, and why an image of her at the school had been removed from the school's website.

The Uber driver asked his passenger to leave the vehicle before violence erupted.
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The video shows an Uber driver holding back a young woman from himself and his car as she pushes against him. When she tries to knee him in the groin, the driver throws her to the ground.

The woman then gets up and walks over the to car, pulls open the passenger door, gets in and then curses at the driver, yelling repeatedly "Get in the car!" The woman then begins tossing a wide array of items from the car, including multiple pieces of paper, headphones and scissors.

"I guess that's it!" the woman says after she finishes throwing items out of the car. She then gets out of the vehicle, and begins walking away, with the driver following her on foot. The video then ends.

The person who posted the video on YouTube wrote online that police arrived soon after, when the woman was about to leave the scene in a taxi. The poster wrote that the woman became upset, and claimed "she would lose her medical license, (she claimed to be neurologist) if she got arrested."

The video poster said the driver agreed to accept a cash settlement instead of pressing criminal charges.

The driver, Igor Belic, told NBC 6 in Miami that the woman wasn't his customer, but that she had demanded a ride and ripped the keys from him.

"She was erratic. She was screaming, cursing, calling me names," Belic told the station.

Miami police told The Miami Herald that although police responded to the scene for a disturbance, "There was no report written, and there will be no investigation."

Uber told CNBC that Ramkissoon won't be getting any rides soon from its drivers.

"Uber expects everyone associated with the platform — both drivers and riders — to conduct themselves with a shared level of respect and common courtesy, and all forms of harassment and abuse are not tolerated," Uber said in a statement. "We have suspended the rider account of this individual as we investigate the incident."

NBC 6 in Miami said it went to Ramkissoon's Miami home to get a statement, but was told to leave the property. CNBC asked Jackson Health to pass along a request for comment to Ramkissoon, but has not yet heard back from her.

Belic, who confirmed that he didn't want to press charges, told NBC 6 that, "If she's a good doctor and she can help people, I wouldn't want her to lose her license. Maybe she's a really good doctor."

A Uber driver in New York City.
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In the prior Uber fracas that drew attention due to a YouTube video, Golden faces assault charges for the Oct. 30 attack on driver Edward Caban in Costa Mesa.

Caban also is suing Golden in connection with the incident.

CNBC reported last week that Golden has filed a civil cross complaint against Caban, seeking $5 million in damages due to his claim that the driver violated California law by videotaping him in the car without Golden's consent. Golden is also seeking to have the video tossed out as evidence in the criminal case on the same grounds.