Local News

Bus driver charged with assaulting autistic 8-year-old in Cumberland County

Posted May 11, 2016 5:59 p.m. EDT
Updated May 11, 2016 6:14 p.m. EDT

— A Hope Mills woman was arrested Tuesday in connection with the March assault of an 8-year-old autistic child.

A warrant said Elizabeth Derrick, 48, of the 5800 block of Paragon Point, was on duty as a bus driver for Cumberland County Schools on March 3 when she became irritated with the 8-year-old, who had been diagnosed with autism and doesn’t speak.

Derrick stopped the bus and walked over to the child, who was buckled in, and grabbed the child’s inner thigh, resulting in multiple bruises, the warrant said. She then unbuckled the child, grabbed the child by the bicep, and dragged the child to the back of the bus.

The warrant said Derrick also yelled at the 8-year-old, upsetting that child and other students on the “exceptional children” bus that transports children with special needs to and from school.

Derrick was charged with assault on a handicapped person.

She was released under $5,000 unsecured bond Wednesday afternoon.

Cumberland County school officials said Derrick resigned from her position sometime in March.