School bus driver arrested for endangering children


James Blueberg

A Carson City fourth-grader said he thought a man illegally entered a school bus on Wednesday was going to shoot him.
Wednesday’s incident led to the arrest of Michael Baxter, 54, and Carson City School District bus driver James Blueberg.
Blueberg was arrested Friday on suspicion of endangering children and threatening a student.
He was placed on administrative leave by the school district on Thursday.
Baxter was arrested Thursday on suspicion of forcible confinement, threatening bodily harm to a student and unlawful contact with a child.
The incident began when the fourth-grader gave the middle finger to the vehicle Baxter was driving, according to the Carson City Sheriff’s Office.
At 8:14 a.m. Blueberg was dropping off students at Bordewich Bray Elementary School, Baxter approached the bus. Blueberg let Baxter on the bus, as the two were acquaintances.
Baxter stood on the bus, demanding to know who had knocked him down.
Michael Baxter

After the fourth-grader admits it was him, Blueberg is heard on tape asking the student, “What are you doing?” Do you want to break your head?”
Baxter is then seen reaching for his right hip with his hand and saying, “See that? It’s a gun. Baxter continued to lecture the student, as he cried, before saying, “people shoot people for this stuff.”
The video does not show a firearm, the arrest report says. Blueberg told authorities he did not see a gun.
Baxter and Blueberg both told authorities they were trying to “teach the student a lesson.”
When questioned, the 9-year-old said he was “very scared” and thought Baxter was going to shoot him.
Blueberg’s bond is $40,000. Baxter’s bail was set at $7,500.
The investigation is ongoing. District officials and school administrators continue to cooperate with local authorities by providing information related to the incident.
The families of the students on the bus were not immediately notified of the incident so as not to hamper the ability of the Carson City Sheriff’s Office to apprehend Baxter, the district said on the call earlier Friday.
Any parent of a child who was involved in this incident, who was not contacted by Wednesday, September 21, should call Detective Sam Torres at 775-283-7855 so arrangements can be made for an interview.
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Carson City Sheriff’s Office, Dispatch 775-887-2008, Torres at 775-283-7855, Investigation Division Sgt. Craig Lowe 775-283-7815, or Secret Witness 775-322-4900.


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