Bus Driver Will Not Be Charged in Fight Between Students

The 64-year-old driver stopped the bus and called dispatch when he saw the beating but did not try to stop the fight, according to the school district.

Bus driver John Moody has retired since the July 9 incident, which was caught on video.
Bus driver John Moody has retired since the July 9 incident, which was caught on video.

A 64-year-old school bus driver will not face child neglect charges for allegedly failing to intervene in a student fight, according to WTSP.com.

John Moody has retired since the July 9 incident, which was caught on video. The video shows three 15-year-old boys beating a 13-year-old boy on the school bus.

Gulfport Police have charged the three older teenagers in the incident.

Moody phoned dispatch but did not try to intervene. The victim suffered a broken arm, cuts and bruises.

According to the school district, Moody stopped the bus and called dispatch when he saw the beating.

Prosecutors said that Moody's actions did not rise to the level of child neglect, according to WTSP.com.

According to Sgt. Thomas Woodman,  the 13-year-old victim had an earlier run-in with one of the suspects who tried to sell him drugs in a restroom at the Lealman Intermediate School. The victim reported this to school officials.

According to officials, at the end of the school day, the victim and suspect rode home on the same bus, #702.

For additional coverage of the incident, see Student Robbed, Assaulted on School Bus.

Bill Church August 03, 2013 at 08:39 AM
the thought of charging the bus driver with a crime is insane - legally he can not touch a child - so how is he going to get them to stop? The school officials never should have put the criminals the victim reported on the bus with him! They are at fault - clear case of negligence!!! You want to charge some one - charge them! Now, chief Vincent was right when he said the driver did not go to the aid of the victim afterward - which is derelict - but not a crime. What are the guidelines in these instances? More confusion by school officials who are hired based on their lack of common sense!!! They proved how inept they are - throw the bums out!!!
KC August 03, 2013 at 09:34 AM
I'm going to stick up for the 64 year old Senior bus driver - you all act as if a 64 year old dude can even begin to stop 3 teenage thugs. He did the right thing: by stopping the bus and calling dispatch for police assistance - apparently this act alone caused the 3 thugs to flee via the emergency exit.
Bill Church August 03, 2013 at 10:04 AM
Well said KC!
CJ August 03, 2013 at 10:38 AM
KC...Well...I'm about 60...and I would have been those 3 kids worst nightmare if I had been there. Bet that. Yeah...I may have ended up arrested...but ..oh well. No way do I sit back and watch something like that...there could have been 10 of them. I do see your point, though, KC...I agree that not all men could do that....for a variety of reasons...including health reasons....but don't think for a minute ''all'' men in their 60's would have sit back and done nothing. Don't get me wrong...I am standing by the driver ..but I also think the drivers should be allowed to be armed with Billie Clubs, Tasers, and Mace....lol. The time seems coming soon in our future where being involved with anything related to high school is going to be practically a Security Officer job, where drivers like this, and other school officials are armed with guns.
Bill Church August 03, 2013 at 10:59 AM
CJ - I like the taser idea - and you are right about the time is coming where Bus drivers and other school officials will need items for self defense and defense of their students. Unless we change our PC bent things will only get worse - these thugs ignore the rule of law and only understand being met with greater force. I am 71 and envision grabbing the closest one from behind in a choke hold - blocking the narrow aisle from the other two - a good choke rendering the perp unconscious and sending a message to the other two that they would quickly understand!
CJ August 03, 2013 at 11:20 AM
Yes Bill...but like you...I envisioned busting the teeth out of one, and breaking the nose of another...and then doing what you did to the third...lol. People our age fight like they do in the movies...lol. We just be regretting it the next 30 days from all the aches and pains I get from just thinking about it.
KC August 03, 2013 at 04:59 PM
No... I disagree with the whole violence responses. We live in a free society - NOT a controlled police state here. Getting a free school bus ride to school should be considered a privledge - all us old guys here (LOL) had to walk a mile plus to n fro everyday. If the kids act up the bus driver should have the right to suspend the student for 3 days to 3 months - depending on the offense. After they walk awhile they will have time to think about why they should behave and have respect for their bus driver. Reminds me of this poor lady she quit her job too.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l93wAqnPQwk maybe one day nobody will take the job of school bus driver and then all the kids can just walk to school. This would save us tax payers a whole lotta money.
Bill Church August 04, 2013 at 08:45 AM
KC - we were just fantasizing! I do agree with your bus point. I lived in Niagara Falls, NY in the 3rd grade and had to walk through 3 ft of snow - uphill - both ways. Kidding about the uphill both ways but not the 3 ft of snow - nasty winters up there! And no buses in those days - early 50's.
Taylor Thomas August 04, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Damned if you do, damned if you don't. If he DID get involved, he'd be fired and be sued by the thug's parents. I think he handled the situation exactly as he should have.
Bill Church August 04, 2013 at 08:50 PM
TT - yes - except for not looking after the injured kid as our chief Vincent pointed out in his statement to the press. In today's upside down world the criminals have more rights and protections than we the good guys. PC gone amuck !!!
OrangeCountyCalifornia August 05, 2013 at 08:37 PM
Those thug teens and their equally irresponsible single mothers make a good argument for segregation and repealing the Civil Rights Act. At least the streets were safer and the quality of life was good until it was enacted.
Paul Ray August 06, 2013 at 06:32 AM
KC, you disagree with the whole violence approach? I suspect the 13 year old might agree, he was the one being brutally beaten, what would have happened if they had killed him? Then what? Sorry, but as ex army and a martial artist, I would have not allowed the brutality to continue allowing the 13 year the chance to be permanently injured or killed. I think it is easy to claim nonviolence as a cover for cowardice.
Sandra Dornick August 06, 2013 at 09:06 AM
Red flag. One reports the other boy for trying to sell drugs, and they they are put in the same bus together with the sellers friends. I would find it almost impossible to believe this was the first attempt of to try selling drugs and that the school wasn't aware it. I would find negligence in part of the school. These three are bullies and need to be punished. Once they get out of juvenile detention center they should never be allowed back on a school bus. Not 3 days or 3 months, but for the rest of their school career. Parents should also be held accountable for these juveniles actions, they are all under age and totally the parent(s) responsibility. As far as the bus driver, he did not look like he was made to be confrontational, but he should have assisted the injured boy, no doubt. Every parent should have to ride the school bus and see what really goes on in them. Many of these kids are like wild animals, including elementary kids. People wonder why there is a shortage of bus drivers ... this should be an eye opener. It is such a huge responsibility with your hands tied.
Bill Church August 06, 2013 at 09:28 AM
Sandra - excellent commentary - very well put and right on point!
KC August 08, 2013 at 09:23 PM
Paul Ray - unlike your badazz self not all 64 yr old seniors are ex-military and martial artist.... it isn't the question what you - I or anyone else would have done... point is THIS senior did the right thing by calling police to handle it. If he had gotten involved ( despite what others may believe) in Pinellas Co. He would of been charged. 6 years ago on Halloween I watched the neighborhood bully kid shove a little girl to skin up and cut her knee, then stole her bag of candy. So I took action and grabbed the little punk - I then reclaimed the little girls candy and also felt it justice to give her his candy. The little girl went to get 4 stitches with her father where she had split open her knee. 15 minutes later the cops show up and charge me with assault on a minor - and strong arm robbery. Did I steal his candy - yes. Handcuffs - jail. My bail was 10,000 so that cost me $1,000.00 then the lawyer was another 7,000.00 all because the punk kid lied about "what really happened" and you wonder WHY people like myself just turn away anymore?
Sandra Dornick August 13, 2013 at 11:14 PM
This is disturbing ... two of these thugs get probation and the other fate isn't met yet. http://mobile.wnd.com/2013/08/dad-son-sorry-for-beating-white-boy-on-bus-2/
CJ August 14, 2013 at 12:00 PM
Sandra. Wow. I had thought I was done commenting on this story until I saw your post and the link on it. It has the word ''white boy'' in it. I have to tell you...I had ''assumed'' all along that the kid who got beat up was also black. The video clearly shows the 3 punks who did it were black. I have had the impression from the way articles and news reports on this have been given...that the reason the kid got beat up was because he refused to buy drugs...or snitched...or something like that. It never occurred to me this was a racist issue. I am not quick to use that term. In fact...I was so startled by seeing for the first time that this was a white boy that got beaten...I now wonder why this crime is not just considered ''just'' a racist incident...but an actual ''Hate Crime''...which is a whole different degree of crime. It would then be a Federal Crime. These 3 young boys are getting off way too easy, but I realize that the Juvenile system is what it is. It's obvious why many juvenile crimes are now tried as adults...and this case is surely borderline at best. With the amount of video evidence, I fail to see why this was not handled as a Hate Crime. If it had been 3 white kids beating a black kid like this...well....I should not have to argue the point with ''anyone''...that it would have been handled a lot differently. We'd be seeing 3 white boys being charged as adults. I can live with the fact this was not charged as a hate crime, but I reserve my own judgment on what I think on that. If it was not a Hate Crime, I don't think you can get any closer to how you can define one.


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