Affidavit: Bus driver told missing girl to 'take a nap'

Full story: The Indianapolis Star

A Carmel bus driver accused of leaving a 5-year-old girl alone on her bus told police she checked the vehicle before leaving it parked on an 80-degree August day.
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1 - 20 of 121 Comments Last updated Sep 16, 2007
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Evident-ly

Indianapolis, IN

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#2
Aug 31, 2007
 
Telling lies obviously effects your credibility.
Perry Mason

Fullerton, CA

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#3
Aug 31, 2007
 
"Mendes said the girl's parents have not discussed the possibility of suing the school but said they do want it to review its absence and bus-check policies."

HAHAHAHAHA! Mendes is already slobbering over his cut and the family is dancing in the halls at home after winning the lawsuit lottery.
John

United States

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#7
Aug 31, 2007
 
Amazing how the bus was defective at the start of the school year. What does the inspection report say?
mark

Indianapolis, IN

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#8
Aug 31, 2007
 
If the kid can not stay awake on the bus, ban her from the bus.

Since: Dec 06

Peru, Indiana

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#10
Aug 31, 2007
 
She deserves what she gets. She lied and got caught, plain and simple.
Always after the money

United States

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#11
Aug 31, 2007
 
I do agree the bus driver is the main contributor in doing wrong.. HOWEVER, this little girl was not special needs; therefore should be responsible enough for getting OFF the bus.. My 3 year old son would be smart enough to get off the bus or alert the bus driver at one point during the drive that he was on it! The parents shouldn't get a dime, instead they need to look at this and be ashamed of themselves about not teaching their child how to be responsible in these actions! Why is it she did not attempt to alert anyone throughout the day? The bus has a horn that can be used--and it is very, very easy to get off a bus (open the door)..
better than i deserve

United States

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#13
Aug 31, 2007
 
this is probably not a felony offense though. Sure she made a great mistake and tried to cover it up, but there was no intent to harm the girl. Parents everyday get caught intentionally harming their children and get no charges. Fire her and move on. The only reason charges are being discussed is to derail or minimize a lawsuit.
Mad Bovine

United States

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#14
Aug 31, 2007
 
shes probably that nice ol woman in the cafeteria that yells at you for slowing down the serving line.
Enough is Enough

Petoskey, MI

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#15
Aug 31, 2007
 
I agree. The little girl didn't try to hide and was not
asleep. Is she retarted? She deserves part of the blame.
In addition, the Indianapolis Star has become the Indianapolis Enquirer. They are beating this story to death.
The driver has been punished enough. She has been
publicly lynched and lost her job. The parents should not get a dime. The child is partially responsible. She
didn't get off the bus!!
Amazed

San Francisco, CA

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#16
Aug 31, 2007
 
tie her to Michael Vic's leg for 6 months
gfuy

Indianapolis, IN

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#17
Aug 31, 2007
 
Enough is Enough wrote:
I agree. The little girl didn't try to hide and was not
asleep. Is she retarted? She deserves part of the blame.
In addition, the Indianapolis Star has become the Indianapolis Enquirer. They are beating this story to death.
The driver has been punished enough. She has been
publicly lynched and lost her job. The parents should not get a dime. The child is partially responsible. She
didn't get off the bus!!
i am with you on this!!! i agree with you! its time to stoip punishing the bus driver. People get a life!!!!
Blast from the Past

Indianapolis, IN

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#20
Aug 31, 2007
 
Always after the money wrote:
I do agree the bus driver is the main contributor in doing wrong.. HOWEVER, this little girl was not special needs; therefore should be responsible enough for getting OFF the bus.. My 3 year old son would be smart enough to get off the bus or alert the bus driver at one point during the drive that he was on it!
The parents shouldn't get a dime, instead they need to look at this and be ashamed of themselves about not teaching their child how to be responsible in these actions! Why is it she did not attempt to alert anyone throughout the day? The bus has a horn that can be used--and it is very, very easy to get off a bus (open the door)..
it makes me sick to think that people don't take the time to teach their kids how to take care of themselves. if that kid was old enough to get on the bus by herself, she is certainly old enough to get off the bus by herself. maybe the kid was too busy listening to her ipod or talking on her cell phone.
Amazing

Indianapolis, IN

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#22
Aug 31, 2007
 
I can't believe the schools did not call her cell phone, didn't ask the other sibling in passing...really didn't do anything.
The bus driver was 100% negligent. Period.
As soon as I saw this story on the news I called each of my kids' schools and told them that if my child is absent they are to call my cellphone FIRST.
Even if I am at home I always have my cellphone on my person. I understand that sometimes the office doesn't get attendance records until an hour after school starts, but what's the point of calling the parent at all if you are just going to leave a message?
Give me a break.
I can't beleive they don't have monitors on their buses either...that's a crock.
Carmel should demand better for all their holier than thou attitude they seem to spew all over these boards.
Our towns average gross income is 1/3 of Carmel's and we have a monitor (or two) on every bus.
Get with the program Carmel!
No child left behind...oh the irony.
Amused

San Francisco, CA

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#23
Aug 31, 2007
 
gfuy wrote:
<quoted text>i am with you on this!!! i agree with you! its time to stoip punishing the bus driver. People get a life!!!!
I think they should put the tape on the web and let us see for ourselves
cbaray

United States

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#24
Aug 31, 2007
 
better than i deserve wrote:
this is probably not a felony offense though. Sure she made a great mistake and tried to cover it up, but there was no intent to harm the girl. Parents everyday get caught intentionally harming their children and get no charges. Fire her and move on. The only reason charges are being discussed is to derail or minimize a lawsuit.
.
I would agree with you had it not been for the fact that she found the girl and then told her to take a nap and she would wake her later. Instead of getting her right of the bus and to the nurse, she tried to keep her quiet. She put her need to cover up what happened before the need of the child to be checked. The part that says the video shows her checking her hair afterwards disturbs me as well. I guess you have to make sure your hair looks good before you go and lie!
Had she found the kid, taken her straight into the school office, and showed more concern for the well-being of the child than covering her a s s, then I would agree that people are taking this too far. Unfortunately, this is not the case!
straightshooter

United States

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#25
Aug 31, 2007
 
I do agree that the driver should be fired and banned from working around children again. I don't agree with criminal charges. There probably are grounds for a lawsuit after finding that the alarm was not working. When did they put these things on buses anyway? I am not that old and in my day the driver just made sure you were off the bus.
Seems as though you hear about a "kid left on bus" story a couple times a year over the last few years. Makes me wonder how many of these kids have "ADD" and are doped up before heading off to school. I have observed kids on Ritalin, in a buddy's nephew and a girlfriend's grandson. If today's parents are not careful they will end up raising a bunch of space-cadets. Of course that is easier than making your kids mind. IMHO these are just the same type of kids who were hyper and rowdy that we knew growing up. You got your butt beat back then and learned to follow the rules. You were not given drugs to sedate you so your parents could do their thing without being bothered by you.
JoAnn

Indianapolis, IN

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#26
Aug 31, 2007
 
This is why my granddaughter doesn't ride a bus.... I drive her to & pick her up from school everyday!

This bus driver knew the rules but didn't follow them - she lied and endangered a child. She needs reprimanded - though I don't think jail time is the just punishment. Our jails are too crowded now.
Incredible

Indianapolis, IN

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#27
Aug 31, 2007
 
Joe wrote:
The school needs to shoulder some of the blame for the defective alarm.
Uh the purpose of the alarm is that the driver has to go TO THE BACK OF THE BUS TO PUSH IT.
Which, btw-if you read the story...she didn't do...and LIED ABOUT REPEATEDLY.
Yes, she made a mistake but it could have cost the girl her life.
All you people saying this girl was old enough to know to get off the bus wouldn't be saying it if it was your kid who was left there.
There was an adult in the situation and a child...one was supposed to be in charge.
I don't think a child this age knows how to operate a bus door, do you?
old fuddy duddy

Indianapolis, IN

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#28
Aug 31, 2007
 
Mr. Mendes, take a look at the transportation department records. School has only been in session for about 3 weeks now. Were there inspections? Was the alarm button working at the start of school?

Perhaps they should be checked on a more regular basis. Anything that has to do with child safety cannot be taken too lightly. The director may need to do some reevaluating. If her button wasn't working, maybe there should have been radio contact to at least determine an "all clear" (although she might have lied). Maybe the department could make a quick video surveillance sweep to make sure buses are empty.

I agree the little girl should have asserted herself more but maybe the driver has intimidated kids in the past and she truly didn't know what to do. She's only five.

However, it would just be common sense to take a peek through the seats when you're responsible for that many children regardless of policy. Also, the school staff should have been a bit more aggressive in finding out her whereabouts (siblings, cell phones). If she had been abducted, she could have been long gone thanks to every system in place that failed her.
cbaray

United States

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#30
Aug 31, 2007
 
Blast from the Past wrote:
<quoted text>
it makes me sick to think that people don't take the time to teach their kids how to take care of themselves. if that kid was old enough to get on the bus by herself, she is certainly old enough to get off the bus by herself. maybe the kid was too busy listening to her ipod or talking on her cell phone.
I agree that a five year old should be old enough to alert the driver that she was there; however, we don't know the dynamics of the relationship. Given her devious conduct after finding the girl, I wouldn't be suprised to find out she's a grouchy hag. Maybe the girl was scared she would get yelled at for not getting off with the other kids in her grade (the article stated they got off the bus by grade). Some kids are very sensitive to harsh words from adults. While we, as adults, realize that would be a stupid thing to do, it might make sense to a five year old.

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