St. Paul man pleads guilty in car crash that killed Uber driver


A St. Paul man pleaded guilty to causing the car crash that killed Abdishakur Sandiko, a 48-year-old Uber driver, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Wednesday.

In court on Monday, Emery Winford, 43, pleaded guilty to criminal vehicular homicide with a blood alcohol content over .08 within 2 hours and also to criminal vehicular operation, causing substantial bodily harm. He will be sentenced on February 4 and is expected to receive 41 months in prison.

According to the criminal complaint, on the evening of March 16, 2018, Sandiko was driving his black Chrysler sedan as an Uber driver and had a backseat passenger in the car. They were traveling east on Plymouth Avenue North in Minneapolis when Winford, driving a Chevy Tahoe southbound on Lyndale Avenue North, smashed into the driver’s side of the Chrysler, sending it into an electrical box at the southeast corner of the intersection.

A witness who was driving east on Plymouth, just ahead of Sandiko’s car, said she saw the Tahoe driving erratically south on Lyndale well above the speed limit. She pulled over to the side and saw Winford smash into the Chrysler.

Sandiko’s passenger said he was looking at his phone at the time of the accident, but Sandiko had been driving fine before that. The passenger suffered injuries to his ribs and needed five stitches to close a wound to his left leg. Sandiko was unconscious and bleeding when police arrived at the scene. He died from his injuries three days later.