13 Investigates


Mother angered to tears after son injured in school bus crash

Police confirm arrest of CCSD bus driver
Tasianna Caver.jpg
Posted at 10:23 PM, May 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-04 02:45:49-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — UPDATE MAY 3, 11 P.M.: The fallout continues with parents after two Clark County School District bus drivers are involved in separate, alcohol-related crashes within a span of four days.

"We trust our kids, every day, to get on the bus, we trust these drivers to transport our children," said Serena Valenzuela whose son was on one of the buses that crashed on Monday.

"We're not able to [take them to school,] we pay our taxes, we trust them," added Valenzuela through tears.

Like a lot of parents, Valenzuela is just learning that crash which injured her son involved a driver that had alcohol in his system.

"We were just talking with each other, and then the bus just hit the tree, and I was scared," said 12-year-old Julian Augusta.

Augusta was on board a bus that hit a palm tree in North Las Vegas on Monday.

Pictures show the mirror assembly was sheared off the bus.

Valenzuela said she was furious when she learned school staff was not planning to evaluate the students involved in Monday's crash medically.

Augusta complained of a bumped head and bruised elbow and was evaluated by the school nurse after his mother raised her concerns.

UPDATE MAY 3: The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department released a mug shot of a bus driver arrested in connection with a DUI-related crash that occurred at Desert Inn Road and Cabana Drive on April 26.

The bus driver, Tasianna Caver, was booked into the Clark County Detention Center on a DUI charge.

According to Clark County School District employment records, Caver was employed with the district from May 2016 to April 30, 2019.

Stay with 13 Action News for further updates on this developing story.

The Clark County School District has fired two school bus drivers after they were involved in separate, alcohol-related crashes in a span of four days.

In at least one of the crashes, children were on board the bus.

The most recent happened on Monday near Clayton and Lone Mountain in North Las Vegas.

Pictures obtained by 13 Investigates shows a full-size bus was involved in a crash with a palm tree.

The photos show the side mirror assembly was torn off in the incident.

"I was scared, it was pretty scary," said Montrell McCloud, a parent of a 13-year-old boy who was on the bus at the time of the crash.

"He was hysterical, he was scared thinking the bus could possibly have flipped over or something, especially hopping up on the curb," added McCloud.

Monte Harrell, 13, said he had just boarded the bus near the intersection of Scott Robinson and Lone Mountain Monday morning and was on his way to Cram Middle School.

"I was thinking he was a good driver, he drives us there every day safe and everything, but then that happened, and I just couldn't trust him," said Harrell.

Harrell told 13 Investigates the driver was checking his mirrors when he crashed into the palm tree.

Harrell said the impact almost sent him out of his seat.

"Years ago, I was in an accident, a drunk driver hit me while I was pregnant with my daughter," said McCloud.

"It's definitely a frightening experience," added McCloud.

McCloud said there is no excuse for drinking and driving, especially for a school bus driver.

A Clark County School District spokesperson told 13 Investigates there was another, separate crash, involving a school bus driver.

"Within the past week, two district bus drivers were involved in separate accidents, and each was tested for blood alcohol content," a district spokesperson said.

"Both drivers were tested, had alcohol in their systems, and were immediately released from employment," they added.

The district spokesperson adds school bus drivers are held to a zero-tolerance standard for drugs and alcohol.
The second crash happened on Friday; however, school district officials were unable to provide any details, including the location, or whether any arrests were made, and referred 13 Investigates to Las Vegas Metropolitan Police.

When 13 Investigates inquired with Las Vegas police, authorities were unable to provide any information citing a lack of crucial details, including a location.

"It's scary to not have that trust, how are your kids going to get to school safely," asked McCloud.

It remains unclear if either driver was charged or cited for the incidents.

No students were hurt.

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