Dalton police officers suspended for cursing at bus of children - WSMV Channel 4

Dalton police officers suspended for cursing at bus of children

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Two Dalton police officers were suspended for cursing at a bus full of children. The bus driver requested police saying the students were being too unruly for her to safely drive. Channel 3 obtained video of the whole incident.

Dalton Public Schools contracts out for bus service with the company First Student. The company informed us that the bus driver is no longer employed there. In the video you can hear her reprimand the students multiple times before pulling over, and requesting police response. It's how the officers handled it next that rubbed parents the wrong way.

It happened on November 11th. The bus was full of dozens of rowdy middle school students and a frustrated driver. The driver pulled over and warned students she would call police if they didn't quiet down. The arguing continued. The driver requested that the bus dispatcher call police. Two Dalton police officers responded.

"You want to act like a bunch of hellions and she can't f****** focus on what she's doing," Officer John Gurrieri said to the students.

"I was really surprised to find the officers used that language. It's certainly not something that we advocate or support," Dalton Police Chief Jason Parker said.

"You want to act like crazy a**holes, do it at home," Gurrieri said on the video.

Officer Steven Collins talked to one student off the bus, using one swear word.  Officer John Gurrieri talked to the rest of the kids, cursing multiple times.

"You think it's f****** funny when you're all hurt or someone else is hurt," he said.

It didn't take long for an angry parent to complain to the police department.

"Both are good officers however they made a serious mistake of judgement here," Chief Parker said.

Chief Parker says neither officer has ever had a complaint against him before. Collins has been on the force seven years and Gurrieri for one.

"The officers are very remorseful. They understand what impact this has had on their reputation. They understand what impact this has on the credibility of the agency," Chief Parker said.

Both officers were suspended without pay for two days, received written reprimands, are required to do 40 hours of community service in support of local youth programs, and must go through additional training on verbal communication.

Again, the company Dalton Schools outsources for transportation says the driver is no longer employed there.

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