New video shows the terrifying moments when a 6-year-old child was dragged by a JCPS bus in 2015.
Tuesday (July 2021), the civil trial against the driver and the school district began in Jefferson County Court Judge Anne O’Connell’s courtroom.
The new video obtained exclusively by WAVE 3 News Troubleshooters is from the inside of the bus, and shows the moment when the child’s backpack got stuck in the double doors. The driver doesn’t notice and drives away.
The video shows another student standing by the driver as the incident occurs. The driver was later fired by the district after an investigation determined she did not watch as the child got off the bus, as required by their training.
EDITOR’S WARNING: Full video below may be disturbing to some viewers.
From the moment the child is dragged, which her attorneys say was 1,147 feet, the driver never notices. Another car is heard honking at the bus to get it to stop. At that point the driver realizes the girl had been dragged.
“Oh my God, Oh my God,” the driver is heard saying.
The video is expected to be presented during the trial.
The driver, Melinda Sanders, testified as a witness. Attorneys asked her if it was important for all children to remain seated while the bus was in motion, something she did not comply with in the video.
The child, identified as A.R. in the lawsuit, suffered severe nerve damage and PTSD, the lawsuit states. She’s had to have multiple surgeries.
In 2015, the child attended Wilkerson Traditional Elementary School. Grainy surveillance video taken by a resident from the outside showed the child being dragged.
The lawsuit is asking for an undisclosed amount in damages.