ST. LOUIS — Two women have been arrested after allegedly boarding a school bus and attacking the driver here last week, police said.
The bus driver was transporting KIPP Victory Academy elementary school students on the afternoon of April 11 when two students started fighting, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. The driver then reportedly transferred one of the students to a new bus. Court documents state that later, when the driver arrived at a bus stop, the mother of the transferred student, Ty’Andra Williams, boarded the bus and beat the driver, using a squeegee at one point, according to the newspaper.
Charges allege that Tiffany Pruitt aided in the attack by holding the bus door open and helping Williams to drag the driver off of the bus, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. Charges also state that Williams threw the driver to the ground and kept beating her.
The bus driver, identified by KMOV4 as Patrula Griffin, shared her account of the incident with the news source, and said that the student she transferred lied to Williams, claiming that Griffin had told another student to jump on her.
Griffin told KTVI that she was not driving her regular route that day, because her employer, First Student, asked her to drive the route with the KIPP Academy students. She added that another bus driver had reported having difficulties with the students on the route, and that she forgives the women who attacked her.
In a statement obtained by KTVI, First Student said “We are appalled and saddened by the behavior captured in the video. We are thankful our driver was not seriously injured” and that it is working with police and conducting its own investigation into the incident.
KMOV4 obtained a letter (scroll to the end of the story) that KIPP sent to families the day after the incident. The school stated that it “responded swiftly and thoroughly, according to our policies and procedures, which were appropriately followed in this instance” and that it is “looking into this isolated incident.”
St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department officers arrested Williams and charged her with five counts of endangering the welfare of a child, one count of assault in the third degree — special victim, and one count of trespassing on a school bus, according to the police department’s Facebook page. Pruitt was taken into custody on Wednesday and charged with one count of assault in the third degree.