JENNINGS, La. — A 10-year-old here was found over the weekend driving a school bus across town, police said.
The incident happened on Sunday afternoon when officers from Jennings Police Department said they were contacted by a concerned citizen who saw a child driving along Carver St. in a Jefferson Davis Parish Schools bus, according to a post on the department’s Facebook page.
Police Chief Danny Semmes told KPLC that the child rode his bike to where the buses were parked and that the buses were apparently unlocked. Semmes added that the concerned citizen walked over to the child as they were getting off the bus and attempted to distract the child until police arrived. Upon arrival, police said they discovered the child was 10 years old and had driven the bus across town from Jennings High School.
The child was taken into custody and the bus was brought back to the Jefferson Davis Parish Schools board, according to police. Semmes told KPLC that the child and his parents could possibly face charges following the incident. In particular, the parents could be charged with improper supervision of a child.
Kirk Credeur, the superintendent for the district, told the news source that the keys were left in the bus and that the district is “embarrassed” and “upset” that the incident occurred. He added that the district’s buses are used multiple times a day by multiple people, but that “human error” isn’t an excuse. Credeur also said that immediately following the incident, he spoke to the district’s transportation staff from the Jennings area and that by the end of the week, new district-wide safety protocols will be established to prevent incidents like this from happening in the future.
View a photo of the Jefferson Davis Parish Schools bus that the child drove, posted on the Jennings Police Department's Facebook page, below.