Chesterton Tribune



PCSP: Boone Grove School bus driver let students drive her bus

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A Porter Township Schools bus driver has been charged with neglect of a dependent after the Porter County Sheriff’s Police said that she allowed several children to drive her bus.

According to police, on Thursday, Sept. 20, a parent contacted the Boone Grove High School’s school resource officer, a PCSP deputy, to report that the bus driver was permitting students to operate her assigned bus.

Investigators subsequently determined that, at approximately 3 p.m. Thursday, the bus driver--identified as Jonandrea McAtee, 27, of Portage--“allowed three students” to operate her bus as she was dropping off kids after school.

“The three students took turns driving a short distance each down Lourdes Street in rural Valparaiso,” police said. “Other students on the bus witnessed the students driving.”

The ages of the three students, police said: 17, 13, and 11.

At 11:15 a.m. Friday, PCSP deputies took McAtee into custody at the Porter Township Bus Barn, after she had arrived there “to collect her final check,” police said.

McAtee was transported to Porter County Jail on a charge of neglect of a dependent, a Level 6 felony punishable by a term of six to 30 months.

“The students and parents who immediately came forward with this information should be commended for doing exactly what we teach, which is See Something, Say Something,” Sheriff Dave Reynolds said. “An investigation was immediately started and no one was injured or harmed. The Sheriff’s Office and the Porter Township School Corporation take the safety and security of every student seriously and every parent must understand that this case will be investigated thoroughly.”

“This is still considered an ongoing investigation,” police added.


Posted 9/24/2018




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