A Jerome bus driver has been fired after a video surfaced on social media - showing a confrontation between the driver and a student that included the bus driver pouring water on the student.
The Northside Bus Company confirmed to KTVB on Saturday that bus driver Mary Black was fired. The company wouldn’t go into further details because they say it’s a personnel issue.
The video shot by Jerome High School freshman Brayan Alverez shows Mary Black pouring water on eighth grader Miguel Martinez.
Alverez told KTVB that the whole incident happened after his friend, Martinez, was blamed for throwing a water bottle. He says he was then accused of influencing Martinez to throw it. It’s a claim Alverez says isn’t true.
“She tried to take his phone away and when she didn't get to do that, she just grabbed the water bottle and started getting him wet,” Alverez said.
In the video, Black can be heard demanding that when Martinez speak to her he do it in English.
“I don't understand Spanish. I'm not going to learn it. I live in America and it's an English-speaking country. So if you want to speak to me, speak to me in English,” Black can heard saying in the video.
According to Juan Espino, who’s a family friend of Alverez and is also the one who posted the video, this isn’t the first time Black has said something like this. Espino told KTVB that she has said similar things to his son.
“He told me he was told by the bus driver that it was not allowed to speak in Spanish while riding the bus,” Espino said.
Espino says he contacted the Northside Bus Company who said they were going to review the tape. Espino says the company called back a few days later and said there was no evidence.
“When I talked to one of the other kids, he told me that when that took place the driver would turn, when something like that happened, the driver would turn the cameras off,” Espino said.
Espino says when he finally had evidence proving what his son had told him, he had to do something.
“It's not something that we wish for, and not something that I would want to, but there will be consequences in everything that you do in life will be consequences,” Espino said.
KTVB asked the Northside Bus Company about these prior allegations by Espino and Alverez. The company says all they can confirm is that the bus driver Mary Black has been fired.