‘I’m traumatized’; Food delivery driver says she got her car stolen by teens posing as customers
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — News10NBC has been reporting on two food delivery drivers who were robbed on Monday night, raising safety concerns for people who deliver food. News10NBC spoke with a driver who says her minivan was stolen while she was making a grocery delivery in Rochester.
Silvia Mitchell says she is traumatized but is thankful she wasn’t hurt. She is trying to keep a positive attitude but says this has scared her. She has now incorporated some new strategies when making her deliveries, in the hopes this doesn’t happen again.
“I’m nervous, I’m traumatized. I don’t think I’ve ever felt like this before. I’m really paranoid,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell started working for GoPuff, a grocery and food delivery company about eight months ago. It’s how she makes her bread and butter. It started out as a regular afternoon on the job.
“I was making a regular delivery. Nothing felt suspicious. Sometimes the customers do stand outside their homes waiting for their deliveries, so I wasn’t alarmed when I saw about four teenagers standing outside of a house,” she said.
Mitchell said she attempted to make a grocery delivery on Clifton Street. When she arrived at the home, someone was already waiting outside. She then got out of the car and couldn’t believe what happened next.
“Because they were outside, I didn’t think to turn the car off. So I left my keys in the car,” she said. “The boy distracts me as I am unloading the case of water; a young man come back and says ‘my mom is on her way’ — as I’m looking at him one of his friends jumps in driver’s side and takes off.”
That’s when she said she realized this was a set-up.
“The person that lives in the house came to the door and asked me if everything was okay — an older woman, single with no kids, then I look to the right side of me and realized the delivery of the case of water bottles was sitting on the ground,” she said.
She says this is one of the hardest lessons she’s learned, but she tries not to stress.
“I just feel like my entire life was in that vehicle. It’s been hard trying to move around and deal with things but I’m just taking it one day at a time.”
Rochester police responded to the scene and filled out a report for Mitchell. Her Honda Odyssey still has not been found.
News10NBC reached out to GoPuff after the robbery. A spokesperson released a statement saying in part: “We were deeply saddened to hear this delivery partner’s story. we have developed education and partnerships to help minimize experiences like this one and support those who need it.”