School district: Man arrested after trying to board bus, hanging on to mirror as driver drove away


The Oconee County School District said Friday that a man was arrested after trying to board a school bus full of elementary children.

The bus was headed to Fair Oak Elementary. The school district said no students were injured.

The suspect stopped the bus and told the driver someone was being hurt.

“The driver did a great job of not allowing him on the bus,” said Sharon Sanders with the school district.

Sanders said the suspect was on the first step of the bus and holding onto the mirror. He didn’t let go when the driver started to move forward.

After carrying the man on the side of the bus for about 50 yards, Sanders said a retired law enforcement officer and his friend stopped the bus and assisted.

Deputies arrived about a minute later and arrested the man. Sanders said he will be charged with disturbing schools and interfering with the operation of a school bus.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office said 40-year-old William Jared Richardson was arrested and charged with aggravated breach of peace following the incident on Earles Grove Road.

“Around the 500 block of Earles Grove Road, Richardson reportedly ran in front of the school bus in an attempt to get on the bus,” stated Jimmy Watt, a spokesman The bus driver hit the brakes to avoid hitting Richardson and also due to the fact that Richardson reportedly had an object in his hand that the driver perceived to be a weapon. The bus driver then proceeded on; however, Richardson grabbed a hold of the mirror near the doors to the schools while the bus was going down the road in an attempt to gain entry.”

The school’s principal said the bus was about a quarter-mile away from the school when the incident occurred.

The parents of the children involved were notified of the incident.

Watt said Richardson was also placed on trespass notice and will not be allowed on school property at any Oconee County schools.

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