Maine bus driver accused of closing doors on parent after argument

LOVELL, Maine — A school bus driver in Maine is accused of closing the vehicle’s doors on a parent and driving off while the woman was still in the doorway.

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According to the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office, Shirley Danforth, 74, of Stoneham, was charged with assault and driving to endanger, WGME-TV reported.

According to WMTW-TV, Emily Poitras showed the television station a video of the confrontation between her and Danforth on Wednesday in Lovell.

Poitras, of Lovell, said the argument was over her daughter’s use of a cellphone, the television station reported.

According to deputies, Danforth had pulled the bus over during her route to admonish students about using the devices, WGME reported.

When one of the students was let off the bus, Poitras said she confronted Danforth, the television station reported.

Cellphone and security camera video showed Danforth beginning to pull away while Poitras was still standing between the open doors of the bus, and then the open doors hit Poitras, WMTW reported.

“I was completely shocked, how she was screaming, even the kid behind her, was shook over her screaming at the top of her lungs,” Poitras told the television station. “It was very scary for everybody.”

Jay Robinson, superintendent of the MSAD 72 school district, said in a statement that an investigation will proceed.

“As part of our investigation, I have been in contact with the investigating officer, and we will continue our investigation of the matter including interviewing students who were present on the bus at the time of the incident,” Robinson said. “Unfortunately, social media travels faster than our ability to conduct a thorough investigation, but let it suffice to say that we strongly condemn any action that puts students, parents, or staff at risk and will take appropriate measures when we have concluded a full investigation.”



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