Terrifying surveillance footage from a school bus in Allegany County, New York, shows a group of children pleading with their bus driver to stop the bus. The reason for their distress is driver Martha Thompson, who was operating a motor vehicle with a .15 blood alcohol content, nearly twice the legal limit. Per a report from CBS, the 55-year-old New York native plead guilty to driving while intoxicated as well as 37 counts of reckless endangerment - one for each student on the bus. Children on the bus revealed that Thompson reached speeds up to 70 miles per hour and hit a mail box. In watching the video, you can sense the unrest on the bus immediately, and it's not long before the children make their stand.
It's infuriating that a school bus driver would get behind the wheel while intoxicated. By doing so, she put each and every one of those children's lives in danger. While the reality of it is truly terrifying, the silver lining comes from the group of students banding together to stop the act. They displayed incredible courage and maturity and are certainly deserving of all the praise they have received. What stood out to me in particular was the way the older children were there to comfort the younger children. We commend their maturity and quick decision-making to stop the bus driver before something terrible happened.
According to a follow up report from CBS, Thompson's punishment included 90 days of jail, six months of electric home monitoring, and five years of probation. Many felt that the punishment does not fit the crime, including Lori Loomis, mother of 15-year-old Chelsey Pierce, who helped stop the bus, "She put all these children's lives in danger. She could have killed them all. I'm very upset with the outcome." Thompson's attorney has stated that the incident has helped turn his client's life around and has motivated her to seek out the proper help. Regardless, what she did was immoral, inappropriate, and illegal.
What punishment do you think Martha Thompson deserved? Did she deserve harsher consequences? Sound off in the comments section below and share this video on Facebook with your friends and family.