Teen charged in killing of Lyft driver in Virginia

Posted at 10:16 AM, Jan 30, 2020

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Bernard E. Smith, 18, was arrested and charged in connection with the Jan. 28 shooting of 79-year-old Lyft driver Franklin Farrens.

The shooter is suspected to have had ties to the area in Chesterfield where the incident happened and could even live nearby, sources told WTVR.

Smith, who was charged with second-degree murder and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, lives on the same block where Farrens was killed.

Neighbors were shaken after Farrens was found shot to death in the "quiet" Chesterfield neighborhood. The motive remains unknown.

Ronald Moss, who lives two doors down from Farrens’ home, said he was aware his elderly neighbor drove for Lyft.  Moss was a cab driver for eight years and says it can be a dangerous job.

He said he was robbed at gunpoint in Petersburg two years ago.

"One of them pointed the gun at me right here, and I threw my hands up and let it happen," said Moss.

The Lyft app was used to summon Farrens before his murder, WTKR reports. He was shot to death 25 miles from his Chester home.