A lawyer representing a California family has released surveillance video that appears to show a school bus driver taunting and abusing an 8-year-old girl with autism.
The Feb. 6 incident was captured on bus security cameras and led to the arrest of the bus driver, 64-year-old Kim Klopson.
According to police, Klopson was transporting a group of students with special needs to Browns Valley Elementary School in Vacaville and began confronting the student after the girl allegedly started blocking the aisle with her leg.
“If you stick your feet out again… you are going to be on the window,” Klopson can be heard saying.
Once the bus arrived at the school, Klopson began grabbing the girl’s backpack, ordered her to stay seated and said the girl was “misbehaving as always.”
When a paraeducator tried to help the girl off the bus, Klopson continued grabbing and berating the child.
“She’s acting like she’s younger than her baby sister,” Klopson says. “She’s only two, how old are you? One? Oh no, a baby.”
“OK, so I get to do that again? Help you sit up? Get up,” Klopson says as she throws the girl down. “You wanna crawl, you can crawl.”
The girl hit her head on the ground as she tried to get away from Klopson.
“Nah nah nah nah nah,” Klopson says. “You done? Nah nah nah nah nah.”
Klopson tried to force the girl’s backpack on her.
“Please stop it,” the girl cries. “I don’t want to. Stop it.”
“No, I’m not gonna stop it,” Klopson replied.
She is then seen dragging the girl off the bus.
“It’s OK, I didn’t hurt her, guys,” Klopson can be heard saying to people outside the bus. “I mean you’re all like ― it’s OK. Bye… I’ll see you after school. That should be interesting.”
Police said the girl was left with cuts on her head.
Klopson was charged with cruelty to child by inflicting injury, to which she’s pleaded not guilty.
Kim Klopson told ABC7 the video “shouldn’t have been [released],” adding that: “They’ll make a great big deal about that.”
The child’s parents say they now plan to file a civil suit against the school district.
Klopson is due back in court in July.