Taxi driver stabbed, shot fired during robbery attempt

Carlos Collazo and Luis Cruz-Soto (Photos: Fall River Police)

FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — A pair of suspects were arrested Thursday night after a taxi driver was stabbed in Fall River.

The 33-year-old driver told police he was dropping off two men near the intersection of Plymouth Avenue and Slade Street at about 10:15 p.m. when one of the men put a handgun to his head and demanded money.

The driver then grabbed the gun, which was fired into the door of the taxi. No one was struck.

As he tried to exit the vehicle, police said the driver was stabbed several times in the back. He was treated at the scene before being transported to Rhode Island Hospital.

The two suspects – identified as Carlos Collazo and Luis Cruz-Soto – were located in the area and arrested after a brief foot pursuit.

Carlos Collazo and Luis Cruz-Soto (Photos: Fall River Police)
Carlos Collazo and Luis Cruz-Soto (Photos: Fall River Police)

Police said the two men are brothers and had gone to the store to purchase a bottle of liquor before being picked up by the taxi.

It’s alleged Cruz-Soto pulled the gun on the driver, according to police.

Collazo and Cruz-Soto, both of Fall River, are facing charges of armed robbery with a firearm, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon – causing substantial injury, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (pistol whip), attempt to commit an assault and battery by discharging a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm in public without a license and possessing a non-large capacity firearm without a license.

Collazo was arraigned Friday. He’s due back in court next Friday for a dangerousness hearing. In court, it was revealed he was convicted of assault and battery in 2014.

Soto is scheduled to appear in court next Tuesday.

Police are investigating whether the incident is connected to another shooting that took place in the area about two hours earlier. Officers were dispatched at about 8:15 p.m. to St. Anne’s Hospital, where a 21-year-old male was being treated for a gunshot wound to the head.

Police believe that shooting took place in the area of East Main and Slade Streets.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Fall River Police Department’s Major Crimes Division at (508) 324-2796.