An Uber driver was charged Tuesday with raping a female passenger at a North Hollywood motel while the 24-year-old woman was unconscious.
Alaric Spence, 46, faces up to 15 years to life in state prison if convicted of one felony count each of kidnapping to commit rape, rape of an unconscious person and rape by use of drugs, according to the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office.
Spence picked the woman up in downtown Los Angeles last Friday and drove her to the motel, where he allegedly raped her, according to Deputy District Attorney Reinhold Mueller. The woman was intoxicated and unconscious at the time of the alleged attack, the prosecutor said.
Los Angeles police said the woman passed out in the back of Spence's car while en route to Hollywood about 3 a.m. Spence is suspected of driving the woman to the motel, renting a room and then carrying her from his car into the room.
Surveillance video shows the suspect carry the passed out victim from his car to the motel room, said LAPD Robbery-Homicide Capt. William Hayes.
The woman woke up alone, not knowing where she was or how she got there, and called police, according to Hayes.
Spence, who was arrested late Friday, was ordered to be held in lieu of $1.1 million bail while awaiting arraignment July 24.
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He has five previous felony convictions related to possession and sale of narcotics in Los Angeles and Ventura counties and as far north as Sacramento.
Spence's former roommate told NBC4 she was aware of his criminal past, but she didn't see him as a threat and described him as a "gentle soul."
"I was comfortable with him around my daughter," she said. "He was never disrespectful."
He has prior drug-related convictions and had been an Uber driver for the past six months, according to police.
The LAPD believes there may be other victims.
"It doesn't seem feasible that this would be the first time, when you take an individual like this," Hayes said.
A spokesman for Uber released the following statement to NBC4: "No person should ever have to experience the violent act that has been reported to police. We are working with the Los Angeles Police Department to fully support their investigation, and the driver has been banned from the Uber app."
NBC4's Adrian Arambulo contributed to this report.