School bus assistant sprayed cleaning fluid on 7-year-old, police say

YORK COUNTY, Va. — A school bus attendant is facing charges after police said he assaulted a child with cleaning fluid.

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The York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office announced the arrest in a news release, and said David Keith Blackwell, 70, faces charges in connection with the incident. Officers said the bus driver sprayed the child with cleaning fluid because the 7-year-old had spat on him.

Deputies told WVEC that the incident happened on a bus designated for children with special needs. Investigators told the station that surveillance video recorded on the bus shows the child attempting to spit on the adult, but there was at least one seat separating them. Officials said the video shows Blackwell spraying the child “multiple times,” WVEC reported.

Deputies said that Blackwell was charged with three felony counts of malicious bodily injury by means of any caustic substance and one felony count of abuse and neglect of children.

In a statement to WVEC, a spokesperson for the York County School Division said Blackwell is no longer under its employ, and “the York County School Division is committed to providing safe, secure and caring environments in which all individuals demonstrate mutual trust and respect.”

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