LA GRANGE, KY (WAVE) - Oldham County parents are still upset, several days after a beloved bus driver was arrested and accused of DUI with more than 30 kids on board.
Lesley Harvey appeared before a judge Monday afternoon, facing charges including DUI and 33 counts of wanton endangerment.
Parents said Harvey is beloved by the children and trusted for years by their families. Known to everyone on her route as “Miss Lesley,” she reportedly contacted her supervisor Friday afternoon, saying she had hit something as she was dropping off some of her 33 children from Crestwood Elementary.
Parent Amanda Lloyd said Harvey blamed the kids.
“They told me that they just bumped into some poles and Miss Lesley yelled at them saying it was all the children’s fault because they distracted her and her driving because they were behaving badly,” she said.
Police said Harvey claimed there was no damage, but that was not the case. She had backed into three posts supporting a safety cable erected to keep vehicles out of the lake, police said.
“Honestly I’m shaking,” parent Amie Odom said. “I don’t know. There’s so many emotions going on.”
Added Lloyd: “It’s hard to take in.”
Harvey might have escaped detection if residents hadn’t called in reporting the damage.
Her blood-alcohol level tested at .13, more than three times the legal limit of .04 for commercial drivers and more than six times higher than the legal limit of .02 for someone operating a school bus.
State law requires violators to be “relieved of these duties immediately and not be eligible for reemployment in a safety sensitive position for five years.”
Police said Harvey said she had several drinks earlier in the day.
Appearing before a judge via video conference, Harvey said she was unable to pay for an attorney and that she was no longer employed.
Harvey has been assigned a public defender and will be back in court next week.