A 16-year-old girl has been charged with first-degree murder in the fatal stabbing of an Uber driver in north suburban Lincolnwood, Illinois, on Tuesday.
Police said Eliza Wasni, who was charged as an adult Wednesday, was located near the crime scene in possession of two weapons believed to have been used in the killing of 34-year-old Grant Nelson.
Nelson was driving near the intersection of Touhy and Lincoln Avenues around 3:22 a.m. when the attack occurred, Lincolnwood police said in a release.
Authorities said Nelson, of Wilmette, was dropping off a fare in the area when he was stabbed.
Officers responded to the scene after someone reported a man was screaming for help in the area.
Nelson was taken to St. Francis Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries around 7:55 a.m., police said.
“We are heartbroken by the loss of one of our partners, Grant Nelson,” a spokeswoman for Uber said in a statement. “Our deepest sympathies and prayers are with his family and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time,” she continued, adding that the company is working with police and providing information that could be relevant to the investigation.
Grainy surveillance video from a nearby business appeared to show Nelson's car turning into the driveway leading to Hampton Place Condominiums. Moments later, someone seemed to exit the vehicle and walk away.
“The only thing I can see on the video is the building police are investigating in, this car pulls in, almost seems like he dropped off someone there and then just speeds right out pretty quick,” said Mike Mata, of Nuno’s Complete Car Care. “You can see someone walks out of that car and walking really, really slow.”
Nelson’s car, a 2015 gray Hyundai Sonata, was found with streaks of blood in the center of Lincoln Avenue, where it sat for several hours in the busy intersection before being towed away.
Police said the attack appeared to be “an isolated incident” and there was no indication of any danger to the public.
“I want people to know Grant was a good person,” said his sister, Alex Nelson. “He was not a vindictive person. He was not a cruel person. He didn't deserve this fate.”
The teen charged in Nelson's murder is slated to appear in bond court Wednesday afternoon. Her identity was not immediately released because she is a juvenile.
The stabbing was the first homicide in Lincolnwood since 2006, when a murder-suicide took place in the northern Chicago suburb.