Monday, March 24, 2008

Deputies: Cab Driver Pointed Load Gun

A taxi cab driver was arrested Sunday night after deputies say he pointed a loaded handgun at two men outside a North Naples apartment complex.

Nicholas Michael Roberts, 66, 920 Rosemary Lane, Naples, was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and carrying a concealed firearm. Roberts is employed as a taxi driver for Taxi Time Inc. in Naples, according to his arrest report.

Reports say Dieufrane Plancher and Joseph Ernson, both 28, told deputies that they had dropped off their girlfriends at the Fountain View apartment complex. As they were speaking to their girlfriends outside the complex on Fountain View Circle a taxi cab drove by them.

Plancher and Ernson then got into their car and started to drive away when the taxi cab drove in front of them and blocked their way out. They drove up next to the taxi, thinking the driver might need some help.

Plancher said Roberts, the taxi driver, asked him, “What are you guys doing here?” Plancher replied, “What? We can’t be here?”

Roberts then said, “Don’t mess with me or else I will take care of both of you” and then pointed a small black handgun at them. Roberts then drove off.

Plancher and Ernson were able to provide deputies with the cab number. Deputies located Roberts around 11:51 p.m. at Miller’s Ale House, 6320 Naples Blvd., North Naples.

A search of Roberts’ taxi turned up a small black handgun in a holster inside the driver’s side door compartment. The gun was loaded with a round in the chamber.

Roberts told deputies that he was pulling out of Fountain View Circle when a car pulled behind him with its high beams on. He said he was in fear for his safety so he drove away.