Warning: The raw video contains graphic language that could be disturbing to some.
ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) – Prosecutors charged two St. Louis women after a video went viral showing a bus driver being attacked in St. Louis.
SLMPD officers arrested Ty'Andra Williams, and prosecutors charged her with five counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child, one count of Assault in the 3rd Degree on a Special Victim, and one count of Trespassing on a School Bus.
Tiffany Pruitt, 32, is charged with 3rd-degree assault. Pruitt was arrested Wednesday.
Police said the 47-year-old bus driver, identified as Patrula Griffin, was assaulted after Williams boarded the school bus at 9th Street and O’Fallon in north St. Louis On April 11, while students were being let off.
Police said Griffin was picking up students from KIPP Victory Academy when two students got into a fight. Griffin had one of those students, Williams' daughter, transferred to another bus.
When the bus arrived in the 900 block of O'Fallon, Williams boarded despite bring told by Griffin she was not allowed on board. Pruitt held the door for her, police said and helped in the attack.
Williams then started hitting Griffin with a stick, according to police.
Williams and Pruitt then allegedly pulled Griffin off the vehicle and began hitting her multiple times in the face, head and body.
Before police arrived, both suspects left the area.
A video posted to Facebook Thursday night apparently showed the assault. It is currently unknown where the original video was posted but it has been shared and spread throughout social media, raking up thousands of comments.
Griffin was reportedly taken to the hospital and treated for minor injuries.
Bus driver recounts incident
Friday morning, Griffin spoke to News 4 and said she picked up an extra route prior to the assault. She said the route she picked up has been problematic for drivers recently.
Griffin said two girls, who appeared to be 9 or 10 years old, got into a fight on the back of the bus. She also said after separating the two, one of the girls refused to sit down and more fights began to break out on the bus.
"The child that was aggressor - when she got home to her mother, because she got off the bus, she lied to her mother when she got home. She said I pulled her off the bus and I had told another child to jump on her," Griffin explained, adding that this is an ongoing problem on that route daily. Griffin said on the day before her incident, she heard another driver on the radio say the kids were acting aggressively.
Griffin said the first suspect who was seen on video attacking her called her "every name in the book" and then punched her in the face.
Girffin showed News 4 cuts and bruises she sustained in the attack but said she knew God was in control and she is okay.
"If it hadn't have been me, it would have been somebody else. I do truly forgive them for what they have done," she said.
School sends letter home addressing attack
Friday morning, KIPP Victory Academy sent a letter to families addressing the incident:
We are reaching out to let you know about an incident that occurred last night on First Student bus route 8166, transporting KIPP Victory Academy students. During a drop off of students, a video was taken of a family member boarding the bus and attacking the driver. We were made aware of the incident by First Student.
The safety of our students is our first priority. As we do in all matters of student safety, we responded swiftly and thoroughly, according to our policies and procedures, which were appropriately followed in this instance.
We take student matters very seriously and are looking into this isolated incident. Because this is an active police investigation, we cannot comment on the specifics of this event.
At KIPP, we know that it takes our parents, staff, and children working together towards our scholars’ success. We care about every child in our buildings, and we want to work with you on any issues that might arise. Please come to us if there is anything you would like to discuss and thank you to those who have reached out to express your sympathy and support.