Surveillance Video Reveals Bus Driver Hitting, Kicking Autistic Student (VIDEO)
After a surveillance video in 2009 documented Virginia school bus driver Alice Davis Holland and special education aide Mary Alice Evans hitting, kicking, and choking Timothy Kilpatrick, a severely autistic , Bedford County student, the pair was convicted of criminal charges earlier this week, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.
The shocking video shows Holland and Evans hitting the frightened student with a fly swatter, kicking and even choking him. Unable to defend himself because of his seat restraints, the boy appears to be crying as he swings his arms and legs to block the blows.
Kilpatrick's exact age is unclear, as reports of the incident state him to be anywhere between 11 and 14 years old.
The Kilpatrick family has now entered a $20 million lawsuit against the Bedford County School Board and the school system's director of special services, WDBJ 7 reported.
"This is a lawsuit that brings up important questions about the safety of our children," the family's attorney, P. Brent Brown, told the station.
WSET 13 reported that a spokesman for the Bedford County schools said both the bus driver and special education assistant ceased to be employed by the school system shortly after the abuse caught on tape in 2009. But Brown says the boy's father alerted school officials that he suspected abuse when Timothy departed the bus with marks on his face a full year earlier.
This is just one of several instances of misbehavior among school bus drivers. Late last month, New Hampshire bus driver Kimberly Hooley faced DUI charges after police say she hit a mailbox with her school bus with middle school students on board.
In August, suburban Philadelphia bus driver Frederick Poust III was sentenced to one to two years behind bars after he rolled his loaded school bus through 10 stop signs, hit and killed another car's passenger.
WATCH the full surveillance footage: