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Mom files lawsuit against driver who kicked son off bus

Published On: Jan 15 2014 06:25:30 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 16 2014 03:27:25 PM CST

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JANESVILLE, Wis. -

A Janesville mom has filed a federal lawsuit after her son was reportedly kicked off a bus in November.

The suit alleges the bus driver deprived the teen of his 14th Amendment rights for equal protection. The suit names the teen only as DT, but identified his mother as Shytivia Turner-Muhammad.

A video obtained by News 3’s news partners at the Janesville Gazette shows the African-American teen riding the bus. The driver, identified in the suit as Mary Lesko, yells at the teen to move to the back of the bus to make room for a passenger who was apparently elderly or disabled. As the teen moves to the back, he mumbles something under his breath, and the driver kicks him off.

According to the Gazette, bus policy says drivers can ask passengers to move if an elderly or handicapped person needs a seat.

The bus driver named in the lawsuit has since retired, but the teen’s family is asking for $500,000 in damages, saying Lesko acted irrationally and with discriminatory intent when she asked the teen to move.

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