Sevastopol school bus brake line damaged; Sheriff’s Office investigates

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DOOR COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) — Investigators in Door County are trying to figure out if the brake lines on a Sevastopol High School bus were cut.

On Sept. 2nd, the high school football team was playing at Gibraltar. The bus made it north safely, but after the game, with players and coaches on board, the driver started driving back to town when they noticed the breaks weren’t working.

The bus was left overnight as a second bus was called up to retrieve the kids and coaches. It wasn’t until the day after when the district had the bus brought back and inspected that they noticed the brake line was cut.

“I think my view of human nature would be impacted pretty bad to think that someone would do that on purpose – is almost unthinkable,” said Steve Cromell.

Cromell is the Sevastopol School District Administrator. He filed a police report as soon as they saw the damaged line.

“I don’t think these communities are filled with people that are cutting brake lines,” he says, “but, you know, we just can’t afford to ignore it.”

Cromell hopes the broken brake line is a result of wear and tear or some other cause. The Door County Sheriff’s Office says the situation seems more malicious than that.

“The people on the bus could have gotten injured if the bus driver wasn’t on the ball noticed that the brakes weren’t working correctly and pulled off and they got a new bus,” says Door County Investigative Sergeant Connie Schuster.

“They potentially could have had an accident,” she says.

Sgt. Schuster says the cut in the line looks to have been done with a tool. That leads her to believe someone cut the line.

“I hope they weren’t trying to cause anyone any harm but it’s possible,” she said.

Investigators are looking at surveillance video to see if anyone could be seen cutting the breaks. Sgt. Schuster says the department will send letters to parents in both districts hoping that will lead to more information on what happened the night of the game.

“It’s upsetting that, potentially, children could have gotten hurt – or anyone else on the bus – and it’s a very senseless act,” says Sgt. Schuster. “Someone was doing something that was very malicious.”

“It’s troubling if it was done by a human,” says Cromell.

He asks for parents’ patience while the district and county try to solve this mystery.

 

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