Freehold NJ bridal shop sues Uber, says driver stole wedding dresses


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Shrewsbury Historical Society hosts Wedding Dress exhibit, which reopens in January

Peter Ackerman, Asbury Park Press

FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP – A bridal shop in Freehold Raceway Mall is suing Uber, claiming a driver for the ride-share service made off with seven dresses instead of delivering them to a seamstress.

Azaria Bridal LLC filed the lawsuit in state Superior Court in Monmouth County against Uber Technologies and “Torrey,” which it said was “the fictitious name of the felonious Uber driver.”

The suit alleges that “Torrey” solicited work from Azaria and arranged to pick up seven dresses from the shop and transport them to a seamstress on May 17. But, the suit alleged, after he picked up the dresses, he disappeared with them. 

Azaria and Freehold police later tried to contact the driver through the number he provided, but no one ever answered the phone, the suit said.

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“The seven dresses stolen from Azaria by ‘Torrey’ have a retail value of $4,126.98, while the cost of replacing these dresses exceeds $6,000,” the suit said.

The suit said the damage to the bridal shop’s reputation among its customers and in the community exceeds the cost of the theft. 

“The dresses stolen were scheduled to be worn between May 20, 2022, and June 3, 2022,” the suit said. “The dresses were stolen three days prior to the first event.”

The lawsuit alleges the driver completed a fictitious profile, and that he placed a fictitious New Jersey license plate on a vehicle not registered to him and not linked to the vehicle he used to transport the dresses.

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The suit alleges that Uber’s background checks on drivers are inadequate in that the ride-share company does not confirm the authenticity of driver credentials, driver identity or vehicle registration.

“While we can’t comment on pending litigation, we will continue to keep safety at the heart of our work,” Uber said in a prepared statement in response to a request for comment on the suit. 

The statement outlined steps the company has taken to improve safety for customers, including its process of background checks on drivers. 

“All potential drivers are required to go through our background check process, which checks MVR (motor vehicle records) and criminal offenses at the local, state and federal level,” it said. “Drivers are rescreened annually, and we also have a continuous background checks process in place that monitors for new offenses.”

Azaria’s lawsuit alleges Uber’s background checks are inadequate and outsourced to private companies that, by law, have limitations on how far back into an individual’s history they can delve.

Azaria in 2020 sued a competing dress shop in Freehold Raceway Mall, alleging the business defamed Azaria by falsely telling potential customers that Azaria carried inferior products and sold counterfeit dresses. That shop filed a counterclaim accusing Azaria of similar defamation. The case was dismissed last year after the parties reached a settlement, according to court records.

A Manalapan bridal shop sued Azaria in 2017, although court documents from that case were not readily available. 

Kathleen Hopkins, a reporter in New Jersey since 1985, covers crime, court cases, legal issues and just about every major murder trial to hit Monmouth and Ocean counties. Contact her at