A Utah mother, Brenda Mayes, is suing former school bus driver John Naisbitt after alleging Naisbitt closed the bus doors prematurely on her biracial son, resulting in the teen being dragged for approximately 150 feet.
According to documents obtained by CNN, Mayes has filed a civil lawsuit saying her son, referred to as “Child Doe” in the suit, was discriminated against by Naisbitt because of the driver’s “racial animus” toward students of mixed race.
Details of the suit say that the 14-year-old Doe was getting off the school bus in early February when Naisbitt, 78, closed the doors, trapping the boy’s backpack inside, while the victim dangled helplessly outside. Naisbitt traveled approximately 150 to 175 feet, at about 5 to 7 miles an hour, before finally opening the doors and freeing the teen, all of which was caught on video by one of the students still on the bus and displayed on The Salt Lake Tribune.
Naisbitt, who stepped down as a driver and is no longer employed by the school district, is said to have displayed forms of discrimination to biracial students in the past. The lawsuit cites at least two prior incidents involving other student-victims dating back to September 2017, including the alleged harassment of a third-grade biracial girl, at the hands of a white, sixth-grade male. Despite the alleged incident having taken place on Naisbitt’s bus, he failed to diffuse the situation.
During an interview with local news station KSTU, Naisbitt denied intentionally closing the doors on Child Doe.
“I didn’t see him in there. If I had, I would have stopped.”
When asked about being labeled a racist, the former driver simply told KSTU “No,” to claims of racism on his end, citing his black canine as evidence.
“Look at my dog. He’s as black as could be.”