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March 07, 2013  |   Comments (5)   |   Post a comment

Driver who hit boy while passing bus avoids jail


WHITEHALL TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A motorist who struck a 5-year-old boy while illegally passing his school bus in September will not go to jail, The Morning Call reports.

On Tuesday, a judge declined a prosecutor's suggestion that jail time "might be appropriate," sentencing the 62-year-old woman instead to 50 hours of community service and two years of probation.

In the Sept. 12 incident, 5-year-old Brandon Delacruz was crossing a road to board his stopped bus when he was clipped by the bumper of Beverly Bell's car as she drove by. The kindergartner suffered a fractured skull and a cut to his forehead.

To read the full story, click here.

Other news related to illegal bus passing:

North Carolina bill would revoke bus passers' licenses

Mom’s sign tells drivers to stop for school bus

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Read more about: Pennsylvania, stop arm running/illegal passing

I agree with all the above comments, although I think changing the routing so all pick ups are on the right hand side is a band-aid solution. A very expensive band-aid at that. But it only treats the symptom -- not the cause. The cause is people driving distracted in too big a hurry -- and school buses with stop arms deployed and 8-ways flashing just don't make the impression on these people that they should. In an age where you can be guilty of a felony (with up to a year in prison) for giving police a false name, it does seem this punishment does not fit the crime. And make no mistake about it -- this is a crime. If our criminal justice system doesn't start sending a tougher message to stop arm violators, injuries and fatalities will increase. I don't doubt that losing her license for 8 mos. will be a significant adversity for this woman, but think about the message we're sending to society at large. This child could easily have been killed -- and nearly was!

David Brick    |    Mar 25, 2013 10:51 AM

And another example why the rest of the country needs to escort kids OR eliminate crossings. Poor routing.

Buslady    |    Mar 13, 2013 05:58 AM

I'm a bus driver and by the grace of God I haven't had this happen, but it has come close a couple times. The problem is that people are in to big of a hurry and school buses slow them down. People just need to open their eyes because a big yellow bus with flashing light are only invisible if your eyes are closed!

Anonymous    |    Mar 12, 2013 04:43 PM

Although I agree there should have been more consequences for the woman that hit the student, WHERE WAS THE PARENT IF THAT STUDENT AT 5 YEARS OLD WAS CROSSING A STREET?????????

Anonymous    |    Mar 08, 2013 05:57 AM

Moral: If you want to mow down our kids and walk away scot-free, move to PA.

Peter Felknor    |    Mar 07, 2013 05:02 PM

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