A Colorado school bus driver has been fired after getting caught on camera slapping a 10-year-old girl for not wearing a mask, according to a report.
Bertram Jaquez was seen in footage obtained by KKTV ordering the youngster to cover her face with the mask that was pulled down to her chin — and then slapping her face when she replied, “I don’t care.”
“Out of reaction, I slapped her once,” Jaquez admitted in a written statement to school bosses that was also obtained by the Colorado Springs station.
“She just would not listen, yelling at me and the other girls,” her said of the young pupil who said wearing the mask made her feel sick.
Jaquez is facing misdemeanor charges including harassment, assault causing injury and child abuse — and was also fired from his job, the station reported.
“We believe it is never okay to lay a hand on a child,” the Fremont County School District told the station in a statement, saying it was “very saddened by this incident.”
“The driver’s action justified termination of employment, as it goes against District policy and our values,” it said.
“Our goal every day is to transport students safely to school and back home, but that can only happen when everyone, including students and staff, follows the rules.
“We are currently working to identify next steps to help our drivers with strategies designed to support a safe ride to and from school,” the district said.