Delivery Driver Who Bit Off Customer’s Thumb Spotted Back At Work

A delivery driver who bit off a customer's thumb has been spotted working following the incident.
Credit: BBC

A delivery driver who bit off a customer’s thumb has been spotted working following the incident.

Stephen Jenkinson, 36, ordered a pizza on the Deliveroo food app in 2022 but when Jenniffer Rocha, 35, approached his home, they found themselves in a heated discussion.

When collecting the order, the plumber had forgotten his phone, which sparked an argument about his delivery code number.

A delivery code number helps verify that the order has been delivered.

Jenkinson claims the row intensified and Rocha launched an attack on him – he raised his hand to her helmet and she bit into his thumb.

Stephen Jenkinson
A delivery food driver bit Stephen Jenkinson’s thumb off. Credit: Channel 5

He told the BBC: “All I remember, I was shaking her helmet trying to get her off.”

Rocha bit clean through Jenkinson’s thumb and eventually let go. At this point, the 36-year-old lifted his arm and ‘sprayed her with blood’.

“It was as if it had gone through a chainsaw,” Jenkinson recalled.

Jenkinson has since appeared on 5News and claimed the incident has ‘changed his entire life’.

He explained: “I’ve lost my house because of this, I’ve lost my family because of this. Financially, you know, I’m in a really bad place because of all of this.”

A part of Jenkinson’s big toe was grafted onto the stump of his missing thumb.

“That was an 11-and-a-half-hour operation,” he added.

The plumber had to relearn basic tasks such as doing up buttons and tying shoelaces.

Stephen Jenkinson's hand.
Stephen Jenkinson’s big toe was grafted onto the stump of his missing thumb. Credit: Channel 5

Previously, Deliveroo has described the incident as ‘awful’, with a spokesperson saying: “We immediately cancelled the account that was being used at the time of this terrible incident and subsequently terminated an alternative account.

“We have strengthened our processes and recently introduced a new registration process and identity verification technology for substitute riders.”

The BBC reports that Deliveroo had not employed Rocha and that she’d been a ‘substitute’ rider on someone else’s account.

Like many food delivery apps, Deliveroo does not employ any drivers or riders directly. Instead, they are classed as independent contractors and can submit ‘substitutes’ on their behalf.

As Rocha was working as a substitute for another driver, Deliveroo cannot be held legally responsible.

Jenkinson commented: “At the moment, I’m getting nothing from Deliveroo.”

He said the case raises questions about food delivery companies’ responsibility to scrutinise its drivers.

Stephen Jenkinson
Stephen Jenkinson says Deliveroo has not compensated him. Credit: ITV

Rocha previously pleaded guilty to one count of grievous bodily harm at Winchester Crown Court on March 19.

A week later, the BBC reported that the 35-year-old was observed picking up food for a delivery.

The takeaway’s manager would confirm that she was delivering using a Deliveroo account.

Deliveroo has said a second account Rocha was accessing has now been suspended.

Following these reports, Jenkinson appeared on Good Morning Britain and called out the delivery food driver.

He said: “It makes me angry that someone can play the system almost when they’ve already pled guilty to the charges that they are playing the system to a point to keep themselves away from being sentenced or away from prison.

“I hope that she does go to prison for a number of years. She can sit there and think about what she has done to me because the snowball effect of not just biting my thumb off, not just me losing my toe, it’s the relationship breakdown, it’s the debt, it’s the fact I’ve had to sell my house… It’s all these things that have been a complete snowball due to her actions that evening.”

Jenniffer Rocha
Jenniffer Rocha previously pleaded guilty to one count of grievous bodily harm. Credit: BBC

Rocha was due to appear in court for her sentencing on May 3, however, the hearing was adjourned by the judge as she was 90 minutes later, reports MailOnline.

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Written by Aimee Walker

Aimee is a senior content editor at IGV who specialises in finding the best original stories, trending topics and entertainment news. She graduated from Birmingham City University with a degree in Media and Communications.