Heroic teen prevents bus from crashing after driver was knocked unconscious

Parents react to student knocking out school bus driver
Published: Feb. 27, 2015 at 9:17 PM CST|Updated: Jun. 27, 2017 at 6:28 PM CDT
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Tay'veon Slaughter, heroic student (Source: WAFB)
Tay'veon Slaughter, heroic student (Source: WAFB)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - After a bus driver was attacked while the bus was in motion, an 8th grader's quick thinking prevented a terrible situation from becoming much worse.

"When she was knocked out, I stood up and I knew I had to stop the bus," said Tay'veon Slaughter, student at Christa McAuliff Superintendent's Academy. "It was still moving so I stood and I put my foot on the brake and put it in park. Threw it in neutral and pulled the park brake."

The terrifying incident happened as the 26-year-old bus driver was traveling in the 1500 block of Linden Street.

"Several witnesses on the bus said the driver was involved in an argument with an unruly student," said Cpl. L'Jean McKneely, Baton Rouge Police Department. "The student punched the bus driver several times in the face until she was knocked unconscious."

The 15-year-old student got away, and that's when Tay'veon jumped into action.

"I knew I had to stop the bus because, you know, she's not responding," he recalled. "The bus was speeding up. So I knew if we get into a wreck, all of us would have been hurt."

When the bus was safely at rest, Tay'veon kept a level head and called police for help.

"He asked me what was going on so I told him the bus driver is knocked out. The student knocked her out - that we need some assistance - she's not waking up."

When help arrived, the bus driver was taken to the hospital for treatment of her injuries.

"We hear a lot of things about kids and the negative things that they do but to know that one of my kids stepped up to the plate and did something as heroic as what Tay'veon did," said Averil Sanders, Principal of Christa McAuliff Superintendent's Academy. "I was proud to know that those are the kinds of decisions that our kids are making when adults are not around."

Tay'veon is credited as a hero, but you wouldn't know it by asking him.

"I had to do what I had to do."

The teen accused of attacking the bus driver was arrested by officers with the Baton Rouge Police Department after his mother turned him in to authorities. He was arrested and charged with battery of a bus operator, aggravated obstruction of a roadway, and second-degree battery.

A representative for the East Baton Rouge Parish School System says the student was immediately suspended and has been recommended for expulsion.

"The student…has the right to a hearing on the expulsion recommendation," said Keith Bromery, Executive Director of Communications. "We take incidents like this one very seriously. Appropriate disciplinary measures will be instituted based on the investigation into the incident."

"I wasn't surprised," said Joesph Armant who is a parent of a child who also attends a school in the East Baton Rouge School System. He said that you can't blame the school or the bus drive in this case, instead points the finger at the parents.

"It's called home training," he explained. "At the end of the day he definitely didn't have respect or wasn't taught to have respect for his elders."

Armant said after this incident he won't be allowing his child to ride the bus any time soon.

"It's the negativity that goes on the school bus. I know several school bus drivers and they always have the craziest stories."

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