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Teen accused of shooting at school bus on morning route

Even though more national attention has been devoted to stopping gun crimes among kids, scores of youngsters still face charges each year for firearms violations. One Kansas City teen has been accused of shooting a gun at a school bus after the bus driver refused to allow him to board. The incident happened on Jan. 23, when the boy attempted to board the school bus destined for Ruskin High School during the morning pick-up. He is facing juvenile charges of attempted assault and armed criminal action, according to local prosecutors.

Authorities report that the bus driver did not recognize the teen as a rider on the bus. Even though he offered to pay her to get on the bus, she refused to allow him entry. The 16-year-old is accused of shooting about five bullets at the bus as it departed. No students were hit, and no one on the bus was aware that a shooting had occurred. The driver was alerted to the situation after she completed her route and was contacted by police.

Students at another bus stop did see the shooting, however, as well as some neighbors who are considered witnesses. Officers say they are unsure whether the young man wanted to take the gun to the school with him or if he just wanted to ride the bus to his house, which is near Ruskin High School. Authorities report that the school is equipped with metal detectors to prevent students from bringing firearms on campus.

Two Ruskin students were arrested in January in connection with gun crimes.

The young man in this case may not be charged as an adult for the incident, though it is likely that he will serve at least some time in custody or on probation. The evidence in this case is probably fairly convincing, considering the number of witnesses to the shooting. As a result, the boy and his attorney should consider entering a guilty plea to avoid an unnecessary jury trial.

Source: The Kansas City Star, "Student accused of shooting at school bus is arrested," Christine Vendel, Jan. 25, 2013.

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