Local News Spotlight

Student accused of shooting at school bus is arrested

Updated: 2013-01-25T23:13:02Z

By CHRISTINE VENDEL

The Kansas City Star

Kansas City police arrested a 16-year-old Ruskin High School student accused of shooting at a school bus after the driver refused to allow him to board on Wednesday.

The boy, identified as the shooter by witnesses, was detained by school officials Thursday after he showed up for class. The juvenile prosecutor charged him with attempted assault and armed criminal action. He could face additional charges after police confirm the number of students who were on the bus at the time of the shooting.

He remained in the juvenile jail Friday.

Police said he tried to board a school bus headed to Ruskin just before 7 a.m. Wednesday at 93rd Street and Cleveland Avenue but was denied by the driver, who didn’t recognize him as a regular rider. He offered to pay the driver, but she refused and forced him off the bus. As the bus drove away, he allegedly fired about five bullets at the bus. The bus was not damaged and no students were hit. The people on the bus were unaware of the shooting. The driver continued to pick up students along her route and dropped them off at the school before learning of the gunfire from police.

But students at another bus stop for a different high school saw the shooting, as did some neighbors. Police said the suspect has a relative who lives in the area, but the suspect lives closer to Ruskin. Police weren’t sure if he intended to go to school Wednesday with the gun or whether he was simply trying to hitch a ride to a location close to his home. The school has metal detectors to try to prevent students from bringing weapons into the school.

The boy was the second Ruskin student arrested this week in connection with a gun crime. Jackson County prosecutors accused an 18-year-old student of firing at two other students after school let out Tuesday. No one was hurt in that incident.

Because of increasing tensions at the school related to the arrests, a few students were asked not to attend Friday night’s basketball game and court warming because school officials thought they might cause trouble. Extra police officers reported to the school.

To reach Christine Vendel, call 816-234-4438 or send email to cvendel@kcstar.com.

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