Young diplomat raped, murdered and tossed on the side of the highway; Uber driver in custody

A British diplomat who worked in Beirut was found dead and tossed on the side of the road after she took an Uber ride after a night out with friends. The driver is in custody on suspicion of murder.

The BBC reports that Rebecca Dykes, believed to be 30 years old, was found dead on the side of a highway on Saturday. Dykes was a British diplomat who worked for the embassy in Beirut.

Dykes had been out in the city on Friday night for going-away party for a colleague, and reportedly hailed an Uber home.

But she never made it. Police sources told BBC that Dykes had been sexually assaulted and strangled.

The Washington Post reports that Tarek Harb, the victim’s Uber driver, has been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault and murder. The suspect reportedly had a criminal record, and was arrested and jailed on drug-related charges in 2015.

A forensic official told the Washington Post that Dykes appears to have been strangled with a small rope, and that markings on her body indicate she fought her attacker.

A motive for the apparent assault and murder is not yet known.

Dykes’ family released a media statement mourning her death.

“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Rebecca. We are doing all we can to understand what happened. We request that the media respect our privacy as we come together as a family at this very difficult time.”

This a a developing story. CrimeOnline will continue to provide updates are more information becomes available.


[Feature image: UK Foreign Office/Rebecca Dykes]