Local News

Witnesses: Man Drove Into Bus Driver, Yelled Slurs

Posted January 15, 2008

— A Cary man drove his car into a Wake County school bus driver last spring and repeatedly shouted racial slurs at her as he pulled her off the hood of the vehicle, the driver testified Tuesday.

Derry Aimo Schmidt, 46, of 120 Frohlich Drive, was being tried on charges of misdemeanor assault and committing a hate crime in connection with the May 23 incident.

Police said Schmidt drove into the bus-unloading zone at Cary Elementary School to drop off his child after classes had started, and his car became boxed in by school buses.

Bus driver Jametta Farrar testified that Derry became abusive and demanded she move her bus. He then drove his car into her as she stood in the parking lot, knocking her onto the hood of the vehicle, she said.

"Her ankle area was close to his tire. He was yelling at the other bus driver," said teacher Shireen Mehl, who witnessed the incident.

LaTonya Gilbert, another school bus driver, was in the parking lot with Farrar that morning.

"He, like, goes forward a little bit, like he's trying to hit us. I said, 'Oh my God, Jametta move," Gilbert testified. "He buckled her (knees) and hit her, and then he gets out of the car, grabs her and pulls her back."

Farrar said Schmidt shouted racial slurs in her face as he pulled her off the vehicle and shoved her to the ground. The experience left her bruised and shaken, she said tearfully.

"Someone attacked me. I never thought it would happen," the 16-year veteran bus driver said.

No students were on the bus or in the area at the time of the incident.

Cary Elementary Principal Rodney Stanton said he went to the school parking lot a few minutes after the incident began.

"(Schmidt) looked angry. He was standing, looking down at the woman on the ground," Stanton testified.

Schmidt has denied the allegations. During cross-examination of witnesses Tuesday, defense attorneys asked people why they included details in their testimony that weren't mentioned when the police conducted initial interviews.

The defense was expected to present its case Wednesday, and attorneys said the case could wrap up by the end of the week.

If convicted, Schmidt faces a maximum of 150 days in jail for each of the three assault charges and three to 12 months on the hate crime charge.


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  • gandalf1 Jan 16, 2008

    Absolutely hilarious that imforjustice of all people to question other’s post.
    GOLO member since November 27, 2007
    January 16, 2008 11:53 a.m.
    Report abuse

    Post of the day casp3r!!!!

  • 0 Tolerance aka Ms.Turner Jan 16, 2008

    Um Hello folks! If he wasn't driving a BUS in a BUS driving zone then he was wrong wrong wrong!!!! Then to take his frustration of being WRONG out by assaulting the driver with his car????? Where is the world is the Misdemeanor coming from??? That is wild!!

    The hate crime part I think is a bit much seeing if she was white he probably would have done the same thing just saying somehting to demean her profession or something like that.

    BUT he was still WRONG WRONG WRONG!!!!

  • KevInApex Jan 16, 2008

    I think this is less about race and hate and more about anger management in our high strung and fast paced culture. This is probably the same kind of person who honks, curses, makes obscene gestures and risks life and limb just to get a few cars ahead in traffic. If you drive at all you see them every day.

  • casp3r Jan 16, 2008

    Absolutely hilarious that imforjustice of all people to question other’s post.

  • many moons Jan 16, 2008

    They should have charge him with a felony ,an car is deadly weapon.

  • G-Dawg Jan 16, 2008

    Just like Iamforjustice said, the bus driver was wrong.

  • iamforjustice Jan 16, 2008

    GaFan you are so racist...why even bother to post on here. If you don't like it on here then just leave and don't come back....guess you the wrong color...that is what you said...why would you say something like that. No color can change what the moderators want...and nobody knows your color...we only know your ignorance. The bus driver was wrong and that is that.

  • Nancy Jan 16, 2008

    "But buses are often in the area until it's time for their next route. "

    willowdreams, that is exactly what I posted prior, that policy requires drivers to stay put until they leave for their next route, they can't just drive away and gather anywhere they choose.

  • WilloWSnapper Jan 16, 2008

    insert from last nights article

    On May 23, Schmidt was running late dropping his daughter off at school, according to opening arguments. Schmidt pulled into the school bus unloading area instead of at the drop-off area because the gate for that area closes at 8:30 a.m., defense attorney Tommy Manning said.

    After the incident last year, Cary principal Rodney Stanton said parents are supposed to drop off their children at the bus unloading area after school starts. But buses are often in the area until it's time for their next route.

    maybe I read it wrong ?

  • WilloWSnapper Jan 16, 2008

    wakemom: the story last night did, I know how to read and I know what I read