A homeless man wandering through Fresno was arrested on November 5th after he attempted to steal a school bus full of about 41 elementary school children.
The suspect, 47-year-old Christopher Martinez, was reportedly hanging outside of a Fresno gas station when the school bus pulled into a parking space. The bus was carrying students from an Oakhurst science camp back to Reagan Elementary School. Some of the children exited the bus for a short restroom break. Witnesses reported that suddenly Martinez jumped onto the bus. He began shouting at the driver that he needed the bus “to go to the mission” and threatened “Jesus is coming!”
Shocked, the bus driver did not respond immediately. Martinez become more aggressive and grabbed the driver’s collar. He forcefully pulled her out of her seat before telling her that he needed to bring the children with him to San Gabriel Mission. The stunned driver successfully pulled the keys out of the ignition as the suspect attempted to pull her away from the seat.
After pulling the keys, an alarm went of on the bus. The driver then began telling the suspect to get off the bus. The suspect attempted to walk back and forth inside the bus before a teacher and the gas station clerk joined the driver. The three calmly told Martinez to leave the bus. The suspect finally complied and walked away to a different gas station.
Once police arrived, they arrested Martinez. He is being charged with attempted carjacking and attempted kidnapping. Martinez is currently being held at the Fresno jail on a $27,500 bail.