Drunk Bus Driver Took Students To Pick Up McDonald’s
A New York school bus driver is facing multiple charges after taking students on a fast food run while she was drunk.
Lashonda Griffin was arrested at the Gates Chili School District’s bus depot in Rochester on Friday, October 16.
The 29-year-old reportedly passed out after dropping the children off at school, following an unauthorised trip to McDonald’s so she could get breakfast.
There were six students onboard the bus, between the ages of five and 16 years old, Syracuse.com reports. Griffin was driving them to Northstar Christian Academy, near Rochester.
As per WROC-TV, one of the students recalled her saying: ‘We’re going to stop at McDonald’s quick, don’t tell nobody.’ She later took two of the kids into the restaurant to pick up the food. Tu Tran, an exchange student, also said: ‘To be honest, I was a little bit confused by it.’
Later, after the students were dropped off, school officials asked police to investigate, at which point Griffin was found incapacitated behind the wheel. She was arrested after failing a sobriety test.
Gates Police Lt. Robert Long said: ‘We were definitely very lucky in this situation that all of the children were delivered to school from home safely and that the driver had returned back to the bus garage. At which point we intercepted her prior to any other bus routes or any other students or people being on that bus or any lives in jeopardy.’
Griffin is looking at five counts of felony DWI under Leandra’s Law, which could see her put in prison for four years for driving while intoxicated with someone under the age of 16 in the vehicle, as well as six counts of child endangerment and other charges. She was issued with an appearance ticket and released for the time-being.
Griffin had been employed by the school district on a probationary period, which has also pledged to review safety protocols with all drivers ‘out of an abundance of caution’.
In a statement, school officials said: ‘The safety of students and employees is the district’s top priority, and we are very grateful that no one was harmed as a result of this individual’s actions. We are very sorry that these students and families in this community have been impacted by the unfathomable actions of one person.’
David Ferris, whose daughter was also on the bus, told Spectrum News: ‘Her job is to get them to school, safely. It’s not to take them to McDonald’s for breakfast, so that she can get a cup of coffee or get something to eat. It’s just wrong… I would hope that this woman would get some help, truthfully.’
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