Ex-school bus driver on trial for drunk driving
A former school bus driver appeared in court Tuesday to face charges of drunk driving while working in the Greater Toronto Area.
A jury heard testimony from a Crown witness that said she saw Jerry McNeill driving an empty school bus erratically as he entered a kids' waterpark in Scarborough last summer.
Lynn Snow, a school bus driver who works for Laidlaw Transit in Etobicoke, told the court she saw McNeill staggering and that he was barely able to keep his balance. She said she heard him slur his words and observed him buying a hot dog but "kept missing his mouth" when he tried to eat it.
Some of the drivers tried to question McNeill, Snow testified, and a dispatcher tried to stop him from driving. However, McNeill allowed about two dozen children to board the bus before he "tore out of the waterpark," she alleged.
Snow said she heard a dispatcher over the radio system plead with McNeill to pull over as he headed down the Don Valley Parkway. Snow, who was heading in the same direction, saw that police had pulled the bus over at the Richmond Street ramp.
Gerald Ash, another school bus driver, also testified in court Tuesday. He said he saw McNeill cross three lanes of traffic as he merged on the DVP. He said he was worried about McNeill and tried to tail him on the highway but stopped when the chase was becoming unsafe.
Ash also told the court that it pained him to testify against McNeill because of the camraderie between school bus drivers.
The trial is expected to continue on Wednesday.
Jerry McNeill is charged with impaired driving, refusing a breathalyzer test and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Chris Eby