By Jeff Wagner

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Cruising Minneapolis for a living might feel repetitive, but not to one Uber driver who asked we conceal his identity for his safety.

“There’s no night that’s the same. Minneapolis is a whole different city at night,” he said.

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He usually starts his shift at about 9 p.m., shuttling passengers around town until as late, or as early, as 5 a.m. He knows driving overnight can be an adventurous shift, with all types of characters who need a ride.

“Us as rideshare drivers, we try to come out here and make sure people get home safe because that is our job,” he said.

If that’s the case, he sure earned his paycheck Sunday morning as he pulled up near the Pizza Luce in downtown Minneapolis at about 2:30 a.m., not long after bars closed.

With his dash camera rolling and his passenger just steps from his car, gunshots erupt. In the dash cam video, you can see a person running away get hit by a car that was driving slowly down 4th Street.

Another person running trips into the Uber driver’s headlight as swarms of people try to escape the area in every direction. In the video, you can hear the driver say, “Get in, get in, get in,” to the passenger as she casually asks, “Are you my Uber?”

“First instinct I thought was OK, get her in the car, stay calm, keep her calm, and get out of Dodge,” he said.

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The frantic scene is audible as he pulls away, making a U-turn on a one-way street in order to get to safety.

Police say two people were shot, and both will survive. Police have not arrested anyone, but tell WCCO they’ve made solid headway in the case. The driver later turned his video over to police.

“I felt it was crucial for the investigation,” he said.

Violent crime in down is downtown compared to this time last year. But the area near 1st Avenue and 4th Street is no stranger to shootings and other illegal activity. Last month, a crowd formed around the intersection as cars did burnouts and donuts in the road for several minutes.

“It’s not an unsafe place, you just have to be on alert,” the driver said.

And if you need a lift, he’ll be waiting.

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“I’m still gonna come down here and make sure, you know, people who need rides get home,” he said.

Jeff Wagner