Same-sex couple records confrontation with Uber driver after being kicked out for kissing in vehicle

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- A same-sex couple is speaking out about their ride in an Uber in which they say the driver kicked them out because they were kissing.

The couple spoke to Eyewitness News and says they were doing nothing wrong. They immediately got their phone out and began recording the confrontation, which quickly went from bad to worse.

"I don't want to argue with you, just get out of my car," the Uber driver is seen saying in the video.

"It went from shock to like anger," passenger Alex Iovine said.

Iovine and her girlfriend Emma Pichl are still upset after being thrown from that Uber car. "I think for both us it was just a shock, not really knowing what to say," Pichl said.

Alex and Emma called the Uber to take them from Gowanus to the East Village. It was during the ride just over the Manhattan Bridge when the couple says the incident began.

"We had leaned over and peck kissed and then a couple of minutes later the driver abruptly pulled over," Iovine said.

The driver is seen exclaiming in the video that what the couple did is illegal. "He started aggressively coming at us. That's when we pulled out our phone," Pichl said.


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Raw video of the confrontation between the driver and the couple.

Alex started taking video. not knowing what was going to happen.

"This doesn't feel right," Ioving said. "That's when we started going back and forth just being like 'What? Why are we getting kicked out of the Uber?' and he said. 'That's illegal'."

The cell phone video also shows the driver claiming that what the couple did was disrespectful.

The driver, identified by the Taxi and Limousine Commission as Ahmad El Boutari, even objected to having his picture taken.

A spokesperson for the TLC said, "The blatantly discriminatory behavior described by the complainant is repugnant."

"We've never been targeted with such prejudicial behavior" Iovine said.

An Uber spokesperson said, "Uber does not tolerate any form of discrimination, and we have reached out to the rider regarding her experience."

Both Uber and TLC are investigating the incident. Alex and Emma even got a $22 refund.

"I would be nervous I think to kiss Emma again in an Uber," Iovine said.

"I think we are going to steer clear of Uber for a bit," Pichl said.

Eyewitness News tried to reach out to the driver, but was unable to locate him.

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