A school-bus driver from Bentonville, Arkansas has admitted to hitting a student, causing personal injury, but claims he had no knowledge of the incident until the next day.
On April 28, 75-year-old Donald Espeseth attempted to enter a plea of guilty to charges of leaving the scene of a personal-injury accident, which is a class D felony that carries a punishment of up to six years in prison.
Court documents say that 6-year-old Tyson Huffman exited the bus on November 5, dropped something in front of it and bent over to pick up the object. According to an affidavit, Wendy Lott, the driver of the vehicle behind the bus, watched the bus move forward and hit Huffman with both axles as the bus passed over him.
Espeseth apologized to the child and family before he addressed the court and described the incident to Circuit Judge Tom Keith.
Espeseth said that he recalled car horns honking at him and a man who tried to have him stop the bus. He said that he had a tough time hearing him, but believed he’d had a near-miss with a child. He said he looked in the mirrors but saw no child behind him and went back to the bus barn.
According to Espeseth, he first learned of the boy’s personal injuries the next morning when he was called by the director of transportation.