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Cops: Pregnant Lyft Driver Murdered by Passenger

Arizona man was found driving her vehicle
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 29, 2019 1:05 AM CST

(Newser) – A pregnant Lyft driver in her third trimester was brutally murdered by a passenger early Sunday, police in Arizona say. Police say Kristina Howato, 39, was fatally stabbed by 20-year-old Fabian Durazo after she responded to a call for a ride from him in Tempe around 1am, the Arizona Republic reports. Police say after the vehicle arrived, Durazo stabbed Howato inside her 2005 Mercury SUV and continued the attack outside the vehicle. He then stole her vehicle, police say. He was arrested Monday after police spotted the SUV on Interstate 10 around 20 miles east of the California border. Police say they were able to track the vehicle through its GPS technology.

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Howato and her unborn baby were pronounced dead in the hospital. She was the mother of two other children, ages 2 and 4. Durazo faces two counts of first-degree murder, one count of theft of means of transportation, one count of armed robbery, and one count of kidnapping, NBC News reports. Police say after his arrest, he admitted killing Howato and stealing her vehicle. "This is definitely one of those incidents that really is going to affect the police department for a long time, and the community will think about this for a long time," Tempe Police Sgt. Ron Elcock said Monday. A Lyft spokeswoman says the company is "shocked and deeply saddened." (Read more Lyft stories.)

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