Knife pulled on Rockhampton cabbie

TWO cowardly robbers, who fled empty-handed after an encounter with a Rocky cabbie, are being hunted by police today.

The youths, one of whom drew a knife in an attempt to fleece the taxi driver on a North Rockhampton street, ran away after the brave driver refused to hand over his cash.

Police said the taxi driver was parked at the junction of Rockonia and Thozet Rds in Koongal about 10.30 on Sunday night.

When the two youths approached the cab, one of them pulled a knife and demanded the driver's takings.

But the heroic cabbie was having none of it and in the scuffle that followed he attempted to disarm the robber, who didn't have the stomach for a fight. The knifeman's assistant also ran off.

Senior Sergeant Marcus Cryer said the youths looked about 15 years old and of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander appearance.

Rocky Cabs was unable to identify the driver yesterday because of the public holiday and the absence of senior management.

Police confirmed that two youths fled on foot along Thozet Rd.

“Nothing was stolen and no one was injured during the incident,” a spokesman said.

Rockhampton's taxi drivers are regularly targeted by violent muggers and fare dodgers.

Last month it was revealed a driver quit after an assault for which a 39-year-old man was fined $400, and earlier this year 20 cabbies answered an SOS from a colleague who was punched by a gang of men who refused to pay the fare.

In March a judge jailed a Rockhampton man for six months for spitting on 71-year-old cab driver Leo Gately during a dispute.

Rocky Cabs chairman Wayne Davey said after that landmark judgment most attacks on drivers involved people who had been drinking or using drugs. “We are out there doing our jobs, just as people in other services like ambulance and police officers are,” he said.

Officers said anyone with information about the attackers should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit crimestoppers.com.au to leave details anonymously.



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