Abilene’s bus driver tells why he helped a girl and then a suspicious man


School bus driver Jacob Thomson said he wasn’t an intervening hero when he saw a schoolgirl walking and behaving uncomfortable while a schoolboy was chasing her.

“I think the instinct of being a dad has begun,” Thomson said on Friday about why he drove a bus around the block to check out his students.

Abilene Independent School District bus driver saw a middle school route around 7:30 am on Monday when he saw an elderly man chasing a teenage girl near the intersection of Butternut Street and South 16th Avenue. Was starting.

“I don’t know what he said to her, but he somehow caught her attention, and it surprised her first. It keeps making sure everything is ok. It caught my eye because of it, “said Thomson. ..

Jacob Thomson, a bus driver at Abilene ISD, saw a female student walking to a bus stop on Monday. She was uncomfortable as the man chasing her talked to her. Thomson drove his bus around the block to check her. He allegedly intervened as a man grabbed a student's hand and tried to drag him into an abandoned house.

Jacob Thomson, a bus driver at Abilene ISD, saw a female student walking to a bus stop on Monday. She was uncomfortable as the man chasing her talked to her. Thomson drove his bus around the block to check her. He allegedly intervened as a man grabbed a student’s hand and tried to drag him into an abandoned house.

He usually drops students at Bowie Elementary School at that time, but only one other student was on his bus because of his middle school route.

“I happened to be in the right place at the right time, so I was very fortunate that God put me in the situation I was in,” Thomson said. “If it took 30 seconds or a minute to get a student off at school, it could have made all the difference to the world. I might not have been there.”

As Thomson’s 112th bus approached the girl, the suspect turned around and walked away.

Thomson told a girl who was a student in another middle school, not on the way, that she could sit on the bus and wait until the regular bus arrived.

“She was obviously upset,” Thomson said.

The student told her that a man tried to kidnap her and he loved her and tried to provide an arc cigarette, Thomson said.

“I think it’s something that tempts your child to come,” he said.

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He contacted the bus dispatch and waited a few minutes for the student’s regular bus to arrive.

After driving a few blocks, Thomson noticed several police cars in an unrelated turmoil and pulled them to talk to police officers about the incident.

“He followed up and dealt with the situation immediately, and within 30 minutes to an hour, the suspect was said to be in custody, so while they were already overwhelmed with telephone calls and busy. I’m doing other things, shouting to APD to do their due diligence. “

When she arrived in junior high school, a student resource officer also interviewed the students, according to court documents.

The student told SRO that the suspect grabbed her hand and tried to drag her into an abandoned house.

Police said the main was temporary. He was charged with three felony charges against his child and his deposit was set at $ 15,000. As of Friday afternoon, he was in Taylor County Jail, according to online prison records.

In a news release on Thursday, Abilene police praised Thomson’s actions. He said the student’s mother also contacted him to express her gratitude.

“I think many of the heroes to speak out are APDs that react as fast as they do,” Thomson said.

Depending on the situation

Thomson said he did what he did in the same situation if he was careful.

“We’ve been stuck on our cell phones lately, so we don’t know what’s going on around us or others,” Thomson said.

He said that always being aware of what was happening around him was a lesson he was trying to teach his little son and daughter.

“Just because you happen to be a woman doesn’t mean that it’s not the boy who’s also the victim. You try to teach both children to be equally aware of the situation and always pay attention to their surroundings. Please be careful, “said Thomson.

New bus driver

Originally from Abilene, Thomson returned to his hometown after living in San Antonio for several years. He attended Lincoln Middle School and Abilene High School, Bonham Elementary School, which are currently closed.

Before becoming a bus driver in late October, he engaged in maintenance for five years in a living facility for the elderly. Abilene ISD, like many districts in the state, lacks bus drivers.

That’s the job he said he enjoyed.

“They are definitely not as hard to drive as you think. You can get around the corner better than you think,” he said.

And he said the students were also easy to manage.

“I really have no problem,” Thomson said of the young rider. “That is, if you have bad apples in every batch, but stick to them from the beginning but not rude, you can have better success with your kids.”

more: Abilene ISD bus driver allegedly rescued a girl from a temporary man

more: Abilene ISD bus driver allegedly rescued a girl from a temporary man

Laura Gutschke is a general assignment reporter and food columnist who manages the online content of Reporter-News.If she appreciates local-led news, she can support local journalists Digital subscription to ReporterNews.com..

This article was originally published in Abilene Reporter-News: Abilene’s bus driver remembers why he helped the girl follow the man

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