A Maine school bus driver is now facing assault and reckless endangerment charges after a parent recorded video that appears to show a bus pulling away with the mother of an eighth-grader still in its open doors.
According to the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office, 74-year-old Shirley Danforth of Lovell, Maine was behind the wheel of that bus during the Wednesday afternoon incident, during which it says the parent was struck.
Emily Poitras of Lovell, Maine says she is the parent this happened to when her daughter got off the bus.
During a Thursday interview with NECN/NBC 10 Boston, Poitras explained that she decided to meet her daughter when the bus stopped because she had received a text from her daughter saying that her bus driver had become controversial with students.
Poitras wanted to find out what happened and chose to film the incident on her cell phone for her safety.
A home security video Poitras appears to have captured what happened from outside the bus at the same time and she provided both videos to NECN/NBC 10 Boston.
The two clips appear to show the driver beginning to move the bus away from where it had stopped with Poitras between the doors.
“I actually had to run a few steps with the bus to keep from falling,” she said.
According to Jay Robinson, superintendent of Maine School Administrative District 72 (MSAD 72), where Poitras’ daughter attends school, the school system is also conducting an investigation into the incident.
It is also reviewing Poitra’s video and plans to interview the driver and other students on the bus at the time.
“The safety of everyone involved is always our top priority,” Robinson said in an email Thursday afternoon to NECN/NBC 10 Boston.
The Oxford County Sheriff’s Office says Danforth is expected to appear in court on Dec. 13.