BROOKLYN PARK, Minn. (KMSP) - A 46-year-old bus aide is out of job after allegations she punched a 10-year-old student on a bus ride last week.
“I was upset. I wanted to know why someone would hit a child like that. That was it period. I wanted to know why,” said the student's mother, Ebony Brown.
The 4th grader at Athlos Leadership Academy in Brooklyn Park was on his way home last Tuesday when someone in the back of the school bus threw a pencil hitting the bus aide sitting the third row in the back of the neck.
School officials say when the aide leaned over Maleek Toins to get the pencil, which had landed in front of him in the front row, another student may have hit or kicked her, causing the aide to “lose it”, and punch Maleek in the face several times.
“That’s when I said get off me and she wouldn’t get off me and so I pushed her off me and then she grabbed me in my shirt," Toins said. "That’s when she punched me and grabbed my hair."
School officials say the bus driver pulled over on I-94 near the Dowling Avenue Exit to get the aide off the child and calm the shocked students who witnessed what happened.
The owner of Metropolitan Transportation Network says the aide was fired immediately for violating company policy.
The aide told police it was self-defense and she doesn’t remember hitting Maleek because she was in a motorcycle accident a while ago that caused her to lose some of her short term memory.
“He’s a very loveable kid and they want to say he was the aggressor," Brown said. "He’s 10. You’re 47. How is he the aggressor?”
Maleek’s mother says he was treated at Hennepin County Medical Center for a concussion, welts and scratches on his face. She says he already suffers from weekly migraines.
Brown says her son hasn’t been back to school since last week, but when he returns, it won’t be on a bus.
“I do feel like that was not ok and I want her to go to jail because I don’t want it to happen to anyone else’s kid,” Brown said.
The incident was captured on surveillance video.
Minneapolis police are investigating, but they haven’t made any arrests.
The bus aide could face possible misdemeanor or felony assault charges.
Statement from MTN president and CEO Tashitaa Tufaa
Student safety is MTN’s top priority on our busses at all times. We do not condone unacceptable employee behavior that violates company policy. The employee was immediately terminated and we have cooperated fully with the investigation process.