Colorado bus driver slaps child in the face for not putting her mask over her nose
A Colorado bus driver has been fired and charged with child abuse after surveillance video showed him slapping a female student in the face for not properly wearing her mask.
“I told him no, I get sick from masks,” the ten-year-old girl wrote in her statement recalling the incident. She said the other kids told her to put her mask on. “I yelled at them and said you shut up you’re not involved in this and the bus driver slapped me.”
Several girls were arguing with each other at the back of the school bus, according to Bertram Jaquez, the school bus driver. When Jaquez approached the girl to tell her to raise her mask, she told him “No, I get sick from masks,” according to the girl’s written statement. He then attempts to move her mask above her nose for her as she is seen pulling away. That’s when he slaps her in the face and appears to point his finger at her.
In a written statement to the school district, the bus driver, Bertram Jaquez, admitted, “Out of reaction, I slapped her once,… I tried to explain and she just wouldn’t listen, yelling at me and the two girls.”
The Fremont County School District released a statement, saying “The driver’s action justified termination of employment, as it goes against District policy and our values. We are very saddened by this incident. Our goal every day is to transport students safely to school and back home, but that can only happen when everyone, including students and staff, follows the rules.”
In the district’s termination letter to Jaquez, they say this is the second time he has laid his hands on a student. “This is the second time this year where you have physically touched a student out of anger. The first incident was august 19, where you grabbed a student by the arm after a verbal argument about wearing a facial covering,” the letter said.
Jaquez is facing misdemeanor charges including harassment, assault causing injury, and child abuse.