Entire WWMT NEWSCHANNEL 3 account of violent attack:
Police say the driver became the victim of a student's rage, and instead of driving the bus to school, she was rushed to the hospital.
The Kalamazoo school-bus driver is recovering on Wednesday after being badly beaten.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, around 7:30 in the morning near the corner of Gull Road and Brook Drive in Kalamazoo Township. Police say that a 16-year-old male repeatedly punched the driver in the face and head.
The teenager is being held at the juvenile home, charged with assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder.
Newschannel 3 pulled the young man's records, we can't reveal his name or show his face because he is a juvenile, but we did learn that he has been charged with five assaults going back to 2005.
A source has told Newschannel 3 that several of the victims in those cases were para-pros, or teachers at the teen's school.
The bus driver who was assaulted on Tuesday is a veteran Kalamazoo Public Schools bus driver who was filling in on a route on Gull Road. Police say some of the students on the bus became agitated when she made a stop where there were no students.
At that point the 16 year old got out of his seat, and despite the driver repeatedly telling the teen to sit down, he continued to yell at her, took off his jacket and walked to the front of the bus.
As the student threatened her, the driver grabbed the radio to call for help, and the beating began.
Newschannel 3 watched the video with Kalamazoo Township Police Chief Tim Bourgeois.
"It was very violent," said Chief Bourgeois. "First punch that's followed by repeated punching to the head, at that point she is trying to cover her head with her hands."
As the attack continued, another student tried to put a stop to it.
"The suspect curses at him, pushes him away, and then continues the assault," said Bourgeois.
Eventually students managed to push the suspect toward the back of the bus, allowing the driver to get on the radio and make a call on her cell.
The suspect got off the bus, and took off at the urging of another student before the police arrive.
"When our first officers arrived, the driver was off the bus and the officer contacted her outside," said Bourgeois. "It was obvious she had severe facial injuries and had injuries to her hands."
When police questioned the remaining students on the bus, they refused to give any information. Police did eventually track the student down at his Kalamazoo home.
Newschannel 3 did speak to the victim in the case. She told us that she is doing okay, although her hand was broken while she was trying to fend off the teen and she has broken blood vessels in her eye.
Entire WWMT NEWSCHANNEL 3 story of the teen's parents' defense:
The attack happened around 7:30 Tuesday morning near the corner of Gull Road and Brook Drive in Kalamazoo Township.
Police say a 16-year-old student at K-Resa repeatedly punched the driver in the face and the head.
Looking into the incident, Newschannel 3 learned that this is not the first time the young man has been involved with violence.
Newschannel 3 spoke with the victim of the attack on Wednesday, she didn't want to go on camera for fear of further attacks, but the beating she received left her with a broken hand, burst blood vessels in both eyes, cuts and contusions all over her head and face, six stitches in her lip and a cheek that had swollen to the size of a softball.
Newschannel 3 also spoke the parents of the attacker, who also asked not to be revealed, but told us that their son isn't responsible.
"Our son has stated to us several times he's got twins living up in his head," said the suspect's mother, "and yesterday when I talked to him he said something about the twins in his head."
The parents say their son has been diagnosed with both bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia.
"[He's] been hospitalized several times," said the suspect's mother, "but you know it's working with the medication, trying to get him on the right medication, right now he's working with an excellent doctor."
The suspect's father believes something must have happened on the bus to set his son off.
"We know he's not a bad kid, something else must have went on to provoke him," said the father, "he wouldn't just do that."
The suspect told his father that he was provoked.
"The bus driver had hit the brakes real hard and he said he fell and hit his shoulder on the seat," the suspect's father said.
Video of the incident shows where the suspect loses his balance after the bus driver taps the brakes, but he never falls or hits anything. The suspect's father says that his son doesn't remember anything from then on.
The video shows the suspect calmly taking off his jacket before walking back to the bus driver and beginning to beat her.
plez sez: this isn't normally in my jurisdiction, but the sheer violence and total lack of respect shows an utter bankruptcy of morals on the part of this young man. he is a bad ass who needs to have his ass beaten... and then thrown in a small dark cell away from the rest of humanity!
i don't buy the "sorry" excuses from his parents who expressed no concern for the welfare of the woman who was so brutally attacked by their son. to my way of thinking, they should shoulder a portion of the responsibility of letting such an animal leave their home on a daily basis... an animal who is capable of this level of barbarism toward his fellow man.
there is no other word for this... but "sick"! i have no doubt that this is a troubled young man, but to my way of thinking, he is incorrigible and needs to be put away for a long time!
Read the WWMT Newschannel 3 article about Kalamazoo school bus attack.
Read the WWMT Newschannel 3 article about the kids' parents explanation for his behavior.
Read the WWMT Newschannel 3 article about the victim's husband knows his wife's attacker.