COTA CEO responds after bus driver struck in the face


COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The driver of a COTA bus stalled on Alum Creek Drive and Thimbleberry drive on Friday morning had been struck in the face when a dispatcher sent someone to help him.

The driver, 68, hadn’t moved his bus in a while, when the dispatcher noticed and sent someone to check on the bus. They found the driver with injuries to his face, and Columbus Police arrived.

Medics took the driver to the hospital.

The man suspected of assaulting the driver was wearing a white T-shirt with the words “Ohio Runs Boxing” printed on it.

“I am outraged and heartbroken at the vicious assault against a COTA operator while he was on the job serving the public,” said COTA CEO Joanna Pinkerton. “COTA’s frontline employees, who are dedicated to keeping our community moving, deserve respect and gratitude – not violence.

“All of us at Team COTA are pulling for the strong and speedy recovery of our colleague. In the meantime, we will work with law enforcement authorities to make sure the person responsible for this criminal attack is apprehended and brought to justice. I encourage any person with knowledge of this incident to contact the Columbus Division of Police.”

Anyone with information is requested to contact the Columbus Police Robbery Unit at 614-645-4665. Persons wishing to remain anonymous may contact Crime Stoppers at 614-461-TIPS(8477).

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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